Venezuela: PDVSA could pay its suppliers with bitcoin to avoid sanctions.
Venezuela would be looking to use cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH), to honor the debts of state oil company Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA). This measure would be a mechanism to avoid international sanctions imposed by the United States, according to a report by the Bloomberg news agency.
The report notes that four sources close to the fact revealed that the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV) is conducting “internal tests” to determine the feasibility of handling cryptocurrencies. They would even be studying accounting for crypto assets as part of the issuer’s reserves, which are currently at USD 7.9 billion, their lowest level in almost 30 years.
The evidence was requested directly by PDVSA, which would be interested in transferring its cryptocurrency assets to the BCV, and it is this body that uses them for payment to its creditors. The sources, who were not identified, told Bloomberg that the oil company is confident that the BCV will be less exposed to blockages.
Although it is unknown how PDVSA obtained cryptocurrency revenues, it is known that some government entities manage cryptoactive mining farms. At the beginning of 2018, the mayor of a municipality in the Carabobo state, in the center of the country, disclosed in its social networks an operation of ASIC miners sponsored by its management. The official said that the goal of said bitcoin mining farm is to “combat and defeat the financial war,” as Maduro requested.
On the other hand, the Venezuelan state offers in its Petro exchange platform the option to acquire PTR with bitcoin, litecoin and dash. However, the Bloomberg report does not contain data on how much the cryptocurrency possessions of the oil company amount to.
The information emphasizes that PDVSA has been facing complications in finding banks willing to mediate the payment of its customers and suppliers, for fear of the sanctions applied by the United States on the Nicolás Maduro regime. Also, the oil company would not resort to offering its cryptocurrency assets in the open market, because it would have to register in a foreign exchange office and abide by its rules.
The sanctions seem to have forced Venezuelan regime officials to use digital methods as an alternative to mobilize money. However, measures such as the creation of Petro (PTR) have not achieved the objective. The report states that this new mechanism would be a desperate measure to find a way out of economic isolation.
It should be noted that the commercialization of oil represents almost all of the foreign exchange earnings in Venezuela. In addition, the collapse of the productive capacity of the South American country in recent years, forces it to maintain high levels of importation of finished products.
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