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Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro claimed that the pre-sale of the country’s oil cryptocurrency , the Petro (PTR), raised $ 5 billion and registered more than 186,000 certified purchases, according to TeleSUR. The announcement was made at a meeting with members of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), in Caracas.

During the meeting, Maduro explained that the money drawn from the pre-sale cryptocurrency will be used to “serve everything our country needs.” In his words, money is part of a larger “economic solution”. together.

In addition, Carlos Vargas, superintendent of the country’s cryptocurrency, revealed that more than 83,000 individuals from 127 countries have attempted to buy cryptocurrency in oil. Among them, 3,523 entrepreneurs. As previously covered by CCN, the country had received 171,000 pre-registrations for the symbolic sale, and Maduro claimed that it raised $ 735 million in a single day.

The Petro was created as a way to circumvent US sanctions, while Venezuela faces a steep recession, which has forced its citizens to rely on cryptocurrencies to survive. While Maduro’s words seem to show that Petro’s pre-sale was a huge success, there is little or no evidence showing it.

A NEM wallet that would belong to the Venezuelan government has not yet distributed any of the 100 million Petros ordered by the country’s president. Nevertheless, Maduro recently said that Petro aims to improve the country’s “monetary sovereignty,” while helping it to “make financial transactions and overcome the financial blockade.”

Petro wrapped in controversy

While the Venezuelan leader claims that the Petro is a step forward, several Venezuelan lawmakers do not seem to agree. The country’s opposition congress said the sale of Petro is an “illegal and unconstitutional” instrument for mortgaging the country’s oil reserves. The National Assembly of the country denounced it as a fraud and claimed that this could be a risky investment.

On the other hand, the Chinese credit rating giant Dagong claimed that the Petro “could help the world monetary system.” To strengthen the adoption, Maduro has ordered the country ‘s airlines to accept the Petro and other cryptocurrencies for the tickets.

Despite the controversy, Venezuela will auction Petro to private companies via its Dicom exchange platform. Last month, Maduro claimed that a Petro Gold – a cryptocurrency backed by precious metals – was going to be launched “next week”.

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