Venezuelans to Be Paid at Least Half a Petro a Month

Venezuelans to Be Paid at Least Half a Petro a Month

Economy & Regulation

Announcing a 60-fold increase of the minimum monthly salary, President Maduro promised Venezuelans they will be paid at least 0.5 petro, once his monetary reforms are in place next week. The national crypto will be exchanged at a rate of $60 USD and the new “sovereign bolivar” will be pegged to the digital coin.   

Also read: This Fall May Bring More Crypto-Friendly Jurisdictions

1 Petro = 60 Dollars = 1 Barrel

Venezuelans to Be Paid at Least Half a Petro a MonthNicolás Maduro

Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro revealed the fixed price of the country’s cryptocurrency, the petro, and a new minimum wage as part of a package of measures aimed at improving the socio-economic conditions in the South American country. The policies will be implemented on Monday, when the new, denominated brolivar will be introduced to replace the highly inflated national fiat.

Starting from August 20, 1 PTR will be officially exchanged for $60 US dollars – approximately the value of a barrel of oil on the international markets. The state-issued digital coin can also be purchased with the newly issued “sovereign bolivar” which takes away five zeros from the current “strong bolivar.” One petro will cost 3,600 new bolivars (now 360 million).

With inflation expected to reach 1 million percent by the end of the year, according to the IMF, bolívar fuerte is one of the fastest depreciating national currencies in the world. However, the new bolívar soberano will be “anchored” to El Petro, the oil-backed cryptocurrency introduced by the administration of the leftist Venezuelan leader earlier this year.

60-Fold Increase of the Minimum Salary

President Maduro also announced that the minimum monthly wage in the country will be raised to 0.5 PTR, 1,800 sovereign bolivars or $30 USD. That’s 60 times more than the current 3 million old bolivars (30 after the denomination). The Venezuelan head of state also said the government will compensate small and medium-sized enterprises for the difference in the basic wages in the next 90 days. It will also raise the VAT from 12 to 16 percent.

The changes come after Nicolás Maduro shared his intentions to denominate the bolivar back in March. The new banknotes were expected to have three zeros less than the current and were supposed to be issued in early June. The monetary conversion was subsequently postponed and in late July Venezuelan authorities announced that the petro-pegged bolivar will be introduced on August 20, getting rid of five zeros.

State Retaking Control of Economy

Venezuelans to Be Paid at Least Half a Petro a MonthEarlier this week, the Venezuelan president said that starting from Monday his economically troubled country will have two official units of account – the petro, and the sovereign bolivar. The old and the new version of the national fiat will be circulating together for some time before the “strong bolivar” is phased out.

Maduro assured his compatriots that Banco Central de Venezuela (BCV) and all public and private banks already had the new banknotes and were actively preparing to implement the changes. He added that besides salaries, pricing will also be adjusted and the price ceiling mechanism will be restored. On Friday, the president warned merchants there would be no excuses for any price hikes. Quoted by El Nacional, he stated:

There has to be a government, we have to retake the regulatory role, the authority of the state and the government to enforce economic rules.

Venezuela issued the petro in February becoming the first nation to adopt its own cryptocurrency. The crypto is backed by its oil reserves, one of the largest in the world. Caracas has been trying to introduce the coin in bilateral trade with countries like Russia and India but official agreements have not been reached yet.

According to resent reports, the Islamic Republic of Iran, another country hit by US lsanctions with which Venezuela maintains close relations, is stepping up efforts to develop its cryptocurrency. Iranian government wants to use the coin to circumvent the restrictions reimposed by Washington this month which are mainly targeting its ability to acquire US dollars.

What do you think will be the effect of the reforms Maduro’s administration is introducing? Share your opinions in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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Website Builder Service ‘Wix’ Announces PumaPay Cryptocurrency Payment Option

PumaPay has announced its partnership with Wix, the website creation and hosting platform. Based on the partnership, the PumaPay cryptocurrency (PMA) becomes one of the payment options on the platform.


Wix Adds PumaPay Cryptocurrency

PumaPay which is fast becoming a cryptocurrency payment staple in the adult entertainment industry has added a new client, Wix. The announcement is yet another example of the ever-increasing utility of virtual currencies in several aspects of ecommerce.  According to Venture beat, Wix users now have the option to pay for their website creation and hosting using PumaPay. Online merchants can also take advantage of the cryptocurrency’s PullPayment Protocol as a billing method thus allowing them to accept PMA tokens on their Wix websites.

Commenting on the development, Yoav Dror, the CEO of PumaPay said:

All components of the PumaPay solution are being developed with our clients’ convenience in mind. We strive to make the integration process as smooth and easy as possible. PumaPay’s SDK and API are easy to integrate and very flexible, allowing the adopters to tailor the billing solution according to their unique needs.

There are still a few details that require hashing out before a full rollout of the Wix – PumaPay integration. One of the critical issues is the expected number of Wix users that will adopt the new cryptocurrency payment option. PumaPay for its part is developing a robust operating framework that can efficiently handle the anticipated transaction volume.

According to Dror:

We cannot provide any estimations with regards to the volume from Wix sites. We believe that such integration will create significant volume and are working hard to ensure the best possible efficiency of the PumaPay solution for all of our early adopters and their clients.

About PumaPay

PumaPay, a Cyprus-based blockchain startup completed its ICO earlier in the year, raising $117 million in the process. The company’s PullPayment protocol provides a framework for instant microtransactions at reasonably low fees.

Apart from one-time transactions, PumaPay has its sights on becoming the de facto cryptocurrency for recurring payments of variable or fixed amounts as well as split payments, and pay-per-use among others.

According to Dror, the company is working on the release of an updated version of the PullPayment solution. This new version is expected to facilitate recurring payments on the Ethereum network.

What do you think about Wix accepting PumaPay cryptocurrency payments? Let us know your views in the comment section below.


Image courtesy of LeapRate.com and ShutterStock

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Venezuela: Inflation Tops 100,000 Percent, Bitcoin Costs 60M Bolivars

Venezuela’s currency the Bolivar Fuerte jumped to 9.2 million per dollar and almost 60 million per bitcoin August 18, just two days before a major redenomination cuts five zeros off its value.


Redenomination Looms

As reported by cryptocurrency commentators including Purse.io support head Eduardo Gomez, the bolivar traded unofficially at around 6.7 million VEF per 1 USD August 17, before suddenly depreciating rapidly to 9.2 million.

“Yesterday 1 bitcoin was worth 44 billion bolivars, now it’s at 59 billion,” he noted.

Venezuela: Record Bitcoin Buying Spree Continues Amid Hyperinflation

As Bitcoinist recently reported, August saw the bolivar, which is the world’s least-valued currency, extend its increasingly troubled history. Combined with current behavior on Bitcoin markets, the price 00 of the largest cryptocurrency in VEF terms is now doubling every 18 days.

According to Bloomberg’s Cafe Con Leche Index, which tracks the rate of inflation in Venezuela in lieu of official government statistics, a hypothetical coffee now costs 2.5 million VEF – the highest price ever recorded.

This, Bloomberg suggests, puts the annual rate of inflation above 100,000 percent.

Calls To Educate Citizens In Bitcoin Use

Corresponding to the devaluation of the bolivar, Bitcoin trading activity in Venezuela is meanwhile setting new records on a weekly basis.

Data from Coin Dance shows that for the seven days ending August 11, P2P trading platform Localbitcoins handled over 20 trillion VEF in volume.

Despite the growth, however, difficulties in educating and allowing Venezuelan nationals access to free trading of cryptocurrency remains a problem. Responding to Gomez, Locha.io developer Randy Brito urged support for his project, which aims to spark “hyperbitcoinization” in Venezuela through a bounty scheme.

In addition, Brito advocated his nonprofit operation Bitcoin Venezuela, which provides remote education and support to Venezuelans wanting to leverage the cryptocurrency’s benefits.

As of press time Saturday, Bitcoin Venezuela gave the price of 1 BTC as around 54 billion VEF.

What do you think about Venezuela’s inflation? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Twitter