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| September 17, 2019

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CNN

A trail of ‘bloody gold’ leads to Venezuela’s government

August 20, 2019 |

The crash of steel pounding rock echoes through the dark gallery, as Darwin Rojas, 43, hammers away in a small corner. He’s muddy, sweaty and breathing heavily, crushing stone after stone around him.
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CNN

US sanctions could ‘significantly exacerbate’ Venezuela’s crisis, UN warns

August 9, 2019 |

Newly imposed US sanctions on Venezuela could “significantly exacerbate” the crisis that ordinary civilians are facing in the country, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, warned in a statement Thursday.
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Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash

June 6, 2019 |

Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash

For years Venezuelans have been surviving the harsh economic climate of their country, beset by hyperinflation and political instability. Small businesses have been hit the hardest. But even in these difficult conditions, the ingenuity and hard work of Venezuelan entrepreneurs has allowed them to provide food for their families and services to their communities. Many of them are now using bitcoin cash as an alternative to the national fiat and Cumaná is one of the cities where adoption is growing.

Also read: Venezuelan Mining Parts Supplier Coincoin Now Accepts Bitcoin Cash

Bolivar Inflation Pushes More Venezuelans Towards BCH Adoption

The rapid depreciation of the bolivar has made it difficult to maintain a business, plan for the future and impossible to preserve the value of your income. That’s why many Venezuelans, both merchants and their customers, have sought alternative payment options and some have already found them in cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin cash, with its fees of less than a cent per transaction, is ideal for small, everyday payments in countries such as Venezuela, where poverty has led to widespread economic and social exclusion.

Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash

Bitcoin cash adoption has been growing fast during the past couple of years and according to the Marco Coino app, there are now over 200 businesses in Venezuela accepting BCH. Many of them are in the capital Caracas but the number of stores has been increasing in other cities as well. Not all of them are known to the world yet or even to their neighbors. Local Bitcoin Cash communities help a lot with spreading the word about the next store or restaurant that is open to BCH enthusiasts and willing to accept their electronic cash.

The members of one such community believe Bitcoin Cash brings “the original essence” of the cryptocurrency created by Satoshi Nakamoto. They are working to promote “the expansion and adoption of the money of the future” in the city of Cumaná, capital of the Venezuelan state of Sucre, which is located about 400 km east of Caracas. The region is home to merchants from various industries that take bitcoin cash.

Small Businesses in Cumaná Introduce Bitcoin Cash Payments

Several businesses based in Cumaná already accept BCH, Gustavo Torres, Bitcoin Cash ambassador in the city, told news.Bitcoin.com. Torres is the administrator of the Bitcoin Cash Cumaná Telegram channel and runs a social network of Bitcoin Cash enthusiasts. He shared that there are two real estate agencies, two hotels, a food store and a restaurant that welcome direct bitcoin cash payments.

Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash
Gustavo Torres at the Figueroa y Asociados C.A. real estate agency

La Casa de Lucas tasca restaurant, which started accepting BCH recently, can be found at the ferry terminal of the local seaport. Another representative of the hospitality industry which will let you pay with bitcoin cash is the Astoria hotel located on Sucre Ave 51. It is one of the first and oldest hotels in the central area of the historic city. Cumaná is actually the first continuously-inhabited settlement established by Europeans in South America.

Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash
La Posada Betsy Mar hotel

Another hotel where visitors can pay with bitcoin cash is called La Posada Betsy Mar and is near the beach in Cumaná. Agro Franco is a small store in the city’s main market which sells fish, chicken and pork meat, beans, grains, other foods and agricultural products. It has accepted bitcoin cash since March of this year. Gustavo Torres has helped all these small business owners by installing Bitcoin.com wallets on their mobile devices. This allows them to accept BCH payments and securely store their cryptocurrency.

Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash
Agro Franco food store

Venezuelans use a number of platforms to convert their crypto income from business revenues and remittances to fiat currency, often U.S. dollars or local bolivars. The P2P exchange Localbitcoins was a popular choice in the country, at least before it removed in-person cash trades from its options. Now, a true peer-to-peer alternative which launched on June 4, Local.Bitcoin.com, is gaining traction. The bitcoin cash marketplace allows users to trade BCH privately with anyone in the world.

Other exchanges where Venezuelans buy or sell bitcoin cash among major cryptocurrencies include Basichange.com, Cryptoway.io, and Ccoins. Airtm.com is a platform popular for sending, receiving and exchanging numerous fiat currencies including the bolivar with U.S. dollars, Torres added. He also pointed out that an option to exchange BCH with local fiat money would be a great addition to any crypto wallet and will make his task of persuading merchants to start accepting BCH payments much easier.

Do you expect BCH adoption to continue to grow in Venezuela and neighboring countries in South America? Tell us in the comments section below.

Disclaimer: Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to third party companies or any of their affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any third party content, goods or services mentioned in this article.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Gustavo Torres.


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The post Hotels and Realtors in Venezuela’s Historic Cumaná City Accept Bitcoin Cash appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

CNN

Inside oil-rich Venezuela’s gas shortages

May 26, 2019 |

For the last two weeks, people from several states in Venezuela have described severe gas shortages, a once unthinkable problem. It’s not the first time that the country has suffered gas shortages, but those were blamed on bad distribution and logistical inefficiency. This time, as citizens find themselves queuing for days at the gas stations, many are starting to fear there simply is not enough oil for all.
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CNN

Who gets Venezuela’s oil? Follow its debt

May 17, 2019 |

Venezuela’s two biggest creditors, China and Russia, are keeping an eye on what they’re owed.
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CNN

Venezuela’s Juan Guaido calls for US help in letter

May 14, 2019 |

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido is calling more openly than ever for US assistance, as he continues to seek fresh elections in the country.
CNN.com – RSS Channel – Regions – Americas

CNN

Venezuela’s Lopez says he met generals during house arrest

May 3, 2019 |

Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez believes President Nicolas Maduro’s government will fall “in weeks,” he told journalists in Caracas Thursday.
CNN.com – RSS Channel – Regions – Americas

CNN

Juan Guaido declares ‘final phase’ of operation to topple Venezuela’s Maduro

April 30, 2019 |

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido has made his boldest attempt yet to seize power from President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday morning, announcing an uprising alongside a group of soldiers in the capital Caracas.
CNN.com – RSS Channel – Regions – Americas

OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela’s Petro

April 22, 2019 |

OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela's Petro

Last February, news.Bitcoin.com first reported on the Venezuelan cryptocurrency the petro (PTR) launched by President Nicolas Maduro. Initially, many media reports assumed the digital currency might be phony or nonexistent. However, recent data from a few exchanges and from Venezuelans trading the asset on social media suggests the nation-state issued cryptocurrency is quite real and that locals are trading PTR regularly for goods and services.

Also read: Darknet Users Allege Wall Street Market Exit Scammed, Possibly Snatching $ 30M

Venezuelans Are Swapping the Petro on Exchanges and Social Media

Since the death of Hugo Chavez, when President Nicolas Maduro took over in 2013, Venezuela’s economy has spiraled out of control. At the time of writing, Venezuela’s inflation rate is a whopping 1,623,656%, making the nation state’s fiat currency, the bolivar, pretty much worthless. In an attempt to provide a solution, Maduro created the petro (PTR) cryptocurrency which is allegedly backed by Venezuela’s oil reserves. Some Venezuelans believe that eventually the bolivar will be decommissioned and citizens will be forced to use the petro. According to data issued by the government, PTR is supposed to be valued at 246,332 bolivars or $ 60 per PTR, but this isn’t the case right now. The digital currency also didn’t have a block explorer when the price base was increased by Maduro and most Venezuelans hadn’t seen it being used in the real world.

OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela's Petro

Our last petro report, however, showed the asset has finally seen the light of day and that Venezuelans are able to purchase PTR through the government agency Sunacrip. Moreover, the government has allowed cryptocurrencies like BTC and LTC to be used for payments in order to acquire petros. Sunacrip even created a state-sanctioned crypto remittance platform that supports BTC, LTC, and other cryptocurrencies. There is a block explorer available now that has an extremely glitchy interface, but Sunacrip has insisted that a fully functional petro block explorer will be released on April 30.

OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela's Petro
Amberes exchange. The petro cryptocurrency has been selling between 0.00555-0.007411 BTC on various exchanges.

There is also a variety of exchanges Sunacrip has made available to the public so people can buy and trade their PTR at state-sanctioned trading platforms. This includes authorized trading facilities such as Cryptoexca.io, Afx.trade, Amberes, Bancarexchange.io, Cryptiaexchange.com, and Criptolago.com.ve. The exchange rate for 1 petro varies on each exchange but one PTR is swapping for roughly $ 30-40 (0.00555-0.007411 BTC) and the cryptocurrency is paired with a variety of digital assets. Signing up for one of these trading platforms cannot be easily done, as the identification process is quite strict. For instance, the Amberes exchange requires a state-issued identification number, telephone number, bank statements, and invoices from private services showing a residential address. Some platforms like Bancarexchange allow a social media account to sign up with in addition to mandatory identification papers.

OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela's Petro
Some screenshots of the wallets people use to send and receive the petro (PTR).

OTC Telegram Groups and Facebook Tag Sales

Even though PTR is trading for much less than $ 60, Sunacrip’s official newsletter states that the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has had a “solid, reliable, transparent and inclusive system” since the petro introduction in 2018. Further, Sunacrip also scorns the “attacks at the national and international level, with sanctions and a campaign of discrediting the nation both internally and externally.” In addition to the petro being sold on government approved trading platforms, PTR is being traded on social media channels like Facebook and Telegram. On Facebook, there are lots of tag sale groups (called El Perolero) where people are exchanging goods and services for money. There are many ads these days scattered within these groups that show sellers will gladly accept the petro. One specific FB-based El Perolero marketplace group sees upwards of 9,000 unique ads a day and has over 293,000 members.

OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela's Petro
The Petro Exchange Telegram channel.

There’s also Telegram-based over-the-counter (OTC) groups where people can purchase and sell PTR peer-to-peer. The Petro Exchange group has roughly 321 members and the purpose of the group is to “allow people to buy and sell petro using any digital currency, in addition to the commercialization of any product or service using petro as a form of payment.” However, in order to interact with the PTR dealer, buyers are required to privately send them “identity documents plus a selfie with the document in hand and a handwritten paper with the date and time, all fully readable.”

Over the last six months, there’s been a lot of curiosity aimed at the petro cryptocurrency and now Venezuelans are getting a taste of what it’s like to use the asset and what it takes to obtain the petro. With all the government-sanctioned exchanges made available, the latest remittance platform, and the upcoming revamped block explorer, the incumbent Venezuelan government led by Maduro seems confident that the petro is here to stay.

What do you think about the petro? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Disclaimer: Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the mentioned exchanges, companies, software or any of the affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com or the author is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article. This editorial review is for informational purposes only.


Images credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, and various exchanges.


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The post OTC Groups and State-Sanctioned Exchanges Start Trading Venezuela’s Petro appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Venezuela’s rival factions rally as power struggle persists

March 30, 2019 |

Supporters of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido and the man he is trying to oust, President Nicolas Maduro, are holding rival demonstrations.
FOX News