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Latin American Economy & Business - January 2018 (ISSN 1741-7430)

Venezuela: Cash-strapped government pins hopes on crypto-currency

Chronic shortages of US dollars are causing numerous economic problems for the Venezuelan government. Imports of basic food and medicine have been slashed, as the authorities lack the funds to pay for these goods, while the government remains in default on a number of its external bond obligations. The government’s latest solution to the deepening crisis is the launch of its own crypto-currency. The ‘petro’ is expected to launch imminently; backed by the country’s oil reserves, the government optimistically hopes to raise between US$20m and US$200m each month from digital currency sales.

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