Venezuelan President Announces Official Launch of Oil-Backed Cryptocurrency “Petro”

This week, Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro gave a televised speech to announce the official launch of the “Petro,” which is the first government issued cryptocurrency in the world.

Maduro said that the official public sale will start on November 5th, but that six major exchanges would be listing the Petro this week. However, the Petro is still not listed on CoinMarketCap, CryptoCompare, or any other major exchange.

Maduro also revealed the official website for the Petro has already been launched, as well as mobile wallets for the cryptocurrency, which are already available at Google Play.

Questions About the Petro

The government of Venezuela insists that the Petro will be backed by oil, which if true, could prevent the government from excessively printing money and devaluing the currency, a policy which has caused the current economic crisis in the country.

Petro’s recently released whitepaper specifies that the currency is backed by a portfolio of Oil, Gold and Diamonds. Although, it is important to note that the public has lost significant trust in the Venezuelan government and its central bank as a result of the hyperinflation crisis, and the sloppy roll-out of the Petro.

Initially, Madura promised that the Petro would be ready for full use by August, which included point of sale payments in grocery stores and other local merchants. Now, it seems that the Petro is far from ready for mainstream use in Venezuela.

Madura says that all oil purchases in and out of the country will be paid in Petro, which could be where the most popular use case for this blockchain. Venezuela is one of the world’s top exporters of oil, so if they were able to require foreign buyers to trade with them in Petro, it could turn this crypto into a valuable asset.

However, the Petro is not expected to be welcomed by most Venezuelans, who are already becoming more comfortable with using decentralized alternatives, such as bitcoin, monero, bitcoin cash and dash. Last month, Business Insider reported that dash is especially popular for point of sale transactions in the country.

Dash Core's CEO, Ryan Taylor, told Cointelegraph that areas dealing with economic turmoil can gain the most benefit from crypto. Taylor said:

We’ve found that regions of high inflation rates and industries in which cash handling or credit card chargeback rates are high have been most excited to adopt the technology. For us, we focus on those segments in which cryptocurrency can offer the most benefit, and that’s one of the reasons growth in acceptance is so high.

Ironically enough, Ethereum developer Joey Zhou pointed out that this week that the whitepaper for the Petro seems in fact to be a “blatant Dash clone.”

 

 

Brave and bitFlyer Partner to Develop Crypto Wallet and 'Expand the Recognition of Cryptocurrencies'

Support CryptoGlobe and Brave by trying out the Brave browser.


bitFlyer, the leading cryptocurrency exchange in Japan in terms of trading volume, has partnered with Brave Software, the organization behind the popular privacy-centric Brave browser, to launch a new cryptocurrency wallet and “'expand the recognition of cryptocurrencies'.”

According to an announcement published by bitFlyer, the cryptocurrency exchange and Brave will develop a “crypto asset wallet for Brave browser users.” The announcement does not add any details on the wallet, but speculators believe the wallet may be related to the browser’s BAT token rewards.

In Japan, Brave’s users cannot earn Basic Attention Token (BAT) rewards because of local regulations, and instead of Basic Attention Token Points (BAP), which cannot be traded for money or BAT.

The new cryptocurrency wallet could allow users to either earn BAT or convert their BAP to BAT or use them to buy other cryptoassets, for example. Speaking to Cointelegraph a Brave spokesperson stated:

At this point, we are using ‘points’ to reward users but there are some limits. [Through the partnership] we think it may be possible to go beyond that.

Details about the cryptocurrency wallet will be revealed on July 30 at an event in Tokyo, in which Brave’s founder and CEO Brendan Eich will participate. IT is set to mainly target advertisers. In the announcement, bitFlyer added it listed Brave’s BAT token in April of this year.

Brave, it’s worth noting, has been expanding its influence in Japan. Last month it partnered with Japanese esports team Rush Gaming to develop browsers exclusively for its users. Those who use Rush Gaming’s browser will earn BAP watching ads while surfing the web. Users can then use the points to support Rush Gaming.

Brave and bitFlyer will also be launching a joint marketing campaign to “expand the recognition of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.” The announcement reads:

We will also launch a joint marketing campaign to expand the recognition of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology among our customers and to improve customer convenience.

As CryptoGlobe reported, BAT whales have been in an accumulation phase over the last few weeks, as the top ten BAT addresses have over a one-week period added nearly 6% of the cryptocurrency’s total supply to their wallets.

Featured image by Simon Rae on Unsplash.