The government of Venezuela announced that the mining of cryptocurrencies in the country is now completely legal. This is related to the planned presale of Petro coins, a digital currency emitted by the government. The presale is supposed to begin at the end of this month.
Carlos Vargas, the cryptocurrency superintendent appointed by the government, confirmed the news in a statement for one of the local televisions. He said the citizens involved in the mining of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are not violating the law.
Last year, Venezuela was in the spotlight a few times after the report about police raids against the cryptocurrency miners. The miners were accused of drawing energy from the national electricity network. Vargas now said: “It is now a completely legal activity. We had meetings with the Supreme Court in order to drop all charges against the people who were arrested or their equipment was confiscated in the previous years.”
Vargas also confirmed the presale of Petro, the government’s cryptocurrency, will start around February 20th.
Petro was facing an uncertain future right after it was announced by the President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro. The announcement was followed by numerous comments that it would be hard to find investors for this project, considering all the sanctions against Venezuela. The president Maduro is hoping to use Petro to avoid the sanctions.
The opposition in the Venezuelan parliament called the new coin a scam at the beginning of January.
Petro was designed to be supported by the oil reserves in Venezuela. One Petro coin is equal to one barrel of oil. Petro will have 100 million coins with the market capitalization of nearly six billion dollars.