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Venezuela Wants to Pay for Russia Imports With Its Cryptocurrency

Caracas trade minister says will pay for Russian automotive parts with Petro

Venezuela will use its own cryptocurrency dubbed Petro, while paying to Russia for the delivered automotive parts and components, Jose Vielma Mora, the Venezuelan minister of foreign trade, said.

On Monday, the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry said that the use of Petro in international transactions was on the agenda of the recent Russian-Venezuelan high-level intergovernmental commission. According to Mora, the cooperation of the Venezuelan side with the Russian KAMAZ company best known for its trucks.

"[The issues of cooperation] include the purchases of automotive parts and components, of tires and batteries, as well as assembling of these vehicles in our country and the forms of payment, in which we include the payments with the use of Petro," the minister said, as quoted by the AVN news agency.

According to the politician, the Russian side has also expressed interest in purchases of different goods, such as steel, aluminum, flowers, coffee, and cacao, from Venezuela. 

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Venezuela has become the first country to launch the oil-backed cryptocurrency. The sales of Petro started in March after a month of pre-sales. On February 21, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said Petro raised $735 million in the first day of its pre-sale.

Maduro plans to create four economic zones for working with Petro. The shift to Petro in public procurement, and sales of property for the cryptocurrency are among other president’s plans.

Also in February, Maduro said that Venezuela was preparing to launch another cryptocurrency backed by gold and other precious metals.

Meanwhile, Venezuelan Vice President Wilmar Castro Soteldo said that Venezuela and Russia want to increase the volumes of bilateral trade by 30 percent before the end of the year.

"We have a goal in 2018 — to reach an increase in trade turnover by 30 percent," Castro Soteldo said Tuesday during a session of the Russian-Venezuelan high-level intergovernmental commission, as quoted by the Universal media portal. 

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The official said that taking into account the potential agreements the increase could be higher that 30 percent. Universal reported that in 2017 the trade turnover stood at $459 million.

Source : Sputnik

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