Acknowledging Venezuela’s efforts to deal with inflation and sanctions by creating a state-issued cryptocurrency, Russian officials have nevertheless declined a proposal to use the oil-backed coin in bilateral trade. According to Russian media, Moscow has recently offered Caracas a set of measures aimed at mending the country’s economy but the petro is not among the recommendations.
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Russia Recommends Traditional Economic Reforms
The Russian Federation has taken steps to help its strategic South American ally to overcome the deep economic and financial crisis. A high-level delegation visited Caracas in November and delivered a plan to improve Venezuela’s economy. Moscow’s ideas were recently made public by Russian media. It turns out the petro is not part of the Russian strategy.
The group of Russian government experts, headed by deputy finance minister Sergei Storchak, gave Venezuelan authorities a list of economic measures. It’s now up to Nicolas Maduro’s administration to implement them. He recently won the presidential election and officially took office last Thursday, starting a new six-year term as head of state of the impoverished country. Maduro was reelected despite the 1.3 million percent inflation last year which forced 3 million Venezuelans to emigrate from their homeland to neighboring countries.
The economic recovery plan contains five key recommendations. The first measure proposed by Russian economists is to introduce unconditional basic income for the suffering Venezuelan households, Russian news outlet The Bell reported. The money can be provided by revoking the fuel subsidies currently paid by the Venezuelan government.
The second advice is to “shut down the money printing press,” – in other words stop financing the budget deficit with newly printed money. In August last year, Maduro’s government deleted five zeros to redenominate the national fiat currency. However, with no efforts to cut the deficit, the “sovereign bolivar” lost 95 percent of its value against the U.S. dollar.
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