Venezuelan Government Artificially Raises Its Petro’s Price to $150

The Venezuelan Government has repriced its national cryptocurrency, the Petro, from 3,600 to 9,000 sovereign bolívars ($150). The new price was put in place this week, according to local news outlets, and had been previously announced by the country's president, Nicolás Maduro.

In the midst of the country’s worst economic depression, Nicolás Maduro is taking several monetary and economic measures as part of the country’s Recovery, Growth and Economic Prosperity Program.  

In addition to the significant increase in the Petro’s value, the president also established the minimum wage at 4,500 sovereign bolívars ($75). The decision took effect on December 1 and represents a 150% increase in the minimum wage.

It was also announced that the bolívar fuerte will stop circulating by December 5. The sovereign bolívar, a fiat currency tied to the oil-backed cryptocurrency that created back in August as a means to combat hyperinflation, will replace the old bolívar completely.

Venezuela's Petro

Petro is the first national cryptocurrency and it is backed by Venezuelan oil and precious mineral reserves. As reported by CryptoGlobe, the official sale of the Petro started on November 1. However, no one has been able to use the cryptocurrency yet. There are no official wallets available, and those who decided to purchase it were given certificates of ownership.

Due to a lack of information on the progress of the project, no one knows what is the cryptocurrency's current stage of development. There have also been several inconsistencies in its whitepaper, the last one regarding the number of blocks, as well as accusations that it is a clone of the Dash whitepaper.  

Leonardo Buniak, a renowned Venezuelan economist, argued that the increase of Petro’s value has caused the sovereign bolívar to be devalued more than 100%. He further stated that Petro is not a cryptocurrency, but rather a debt title:

"When the president decrees that the petro is worth 9 thousand bolívares what he is saying is that the petro is not a cryptocurrency, but a debt title, pre-mined. It is impossible to think that it is a cryptocurrency when the value is not given by the supply and demand."


Opera Launches Blockchain, Cryptocurrency-Ready Browser for iOS

Opera Ltd., the company behind the Opera browser, has recently launched a new blockchain and cryptocurrency-ready browser for iOS, following the company’s addition of a built-in cryptocurrency wallet to its Android and PC browsers.

According to a press release shared with CryptoGlobe, the company’s Opera Touch browser for iOS features “crypto wallet integration and Web 3 support,” meaning users can interact with blockchain-based applications through it, as if they were using an extension like MetaMask. The company hinted at the move in March of this year.

The company touts it now offers browsers supporting blockchain-based applications and with a built-in cryptocurrency wallet in various operating systems, including Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS, allowing users to “seamlessly interact with the next generation of Web 3 applications.”

Currently, the browser only supports ERC-20 tokens, stablecoins, and non-fungible tokens, although the company has revealed earlier this year it’s looking to add support for TRON and multiple other blockchains within a  year.

Charles Hamel, Opera’s head of crypto, stated:

We believe that all modern browsers should integrate a crypto wallet. This will enable new business models to emerge on the web. Opera is the first browser to make using crypto on the Web seamless and easy. Following a strong demand from the crypto-community, we are now making this experience available on iOS.

In the press release the company added it believes the “web of today will be the interface to the decentralized web of tomorrow,” with cryptocurrencies being at its forefront. Along with the iOS release, the company announced it partnered with a decentralized-application (dApp) called Marble.Cards, which allows users to turn unique web pages into collectible cards on the blockchain, each being a non-fungible token.

The Opera touch browser itself has a user interface built to let users use large phone screens with ease, as it shifts the navigation towards the bottom of the screen and adds features that make it easy to share pages across devices.

Opera’s main Android browser is also its cryptocurrency-ready browser for the operating system, and it has made it easier for users to buy cryptocurrencies directly from their mobile phones.