Nicolás Maduro, the disputed President of Venezuela, has predicted big things to come for crypto in the nation in 2021 – declaring that the state-issued petro (PTR) token will share a renaissance in the year ahead and saying that a “complete digitalization process” will transform the economy in the next 12 months.
In a state of the nation address in the parliament building, Maduro presented a “revival” for the petro, which many commentators have claimed has thus far failed as a token, with few citizens genuinely interested in using the token in real-world scenarios as anything other than a gateway to bigger tokens or international fiats.
The petro revival will likely be a key pillar in the goal of achieving total economic digitization, Maduro continued.
“National and global cryptocurrency systems will set the tone for 2021, as will the use of blockchain technology in different sectors […] and the development of new applications that will provide solutions to specific problems.”
He continued that Caracas would also look to implement new functionality to the crypto-powered Patria platform, which allows Venezuelans to receive crypto remittances from overseas.
Maduro also announced that his government would this year provide a “means of [digital] payment” for public transport and merchants – presumably in petro and/or fiat bolivars – that do not need a Wi-Fi or wired internet connection.
Meantime, the Venezuelan police claimed it has shut down 37 unregistered crypto miners. In an Instagram post from the police force in the state of Carabobo, law enforcement officials wrote that they had detained a 53-year-old man on charges of illegally operating what appeared to be ASIC bitcoin (BTC) mining rigs, with a photograph of the suspect, handcuffed and facing a wall, standing behind all of his alleged bitcoin miners.