Petro Update: Venezuelan Passport Fees Now Can Only Be Paid In The New Cryptocurrency

Maja Mazur
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The government of Venezuela, along with the president Nicolás Maduro, continues to push through reforms despite citizens’ dissatisfaction. Petro now becomes the only currency that Venezuelans can pay passport fees with.

The year of change

Venezuela is currently dealing with quite a difficult time when it comes to the economy. After a huge crisis and the currency denomination in August, it seemed like the country’s financial situation may finally be out of the woods. Then on October 1st, President Nicolás Maduro introduced his citizens to another massive transformation, as we wrote a couple of days ago. Making Petro (PTR) the Venezuelan’s new official currency was a colossal change that not everyone has agreed with.

Twitter war

People of Venezuela, adjusted to using “normal” money for years aren’t keen on moving into the online space with their payments, which is blatantly visible on social media. Under the hashtag #pasaporteexpress on Twitter one can find loads of complaints from things like the costs of the passport fees in Petro, the exchange rate and the way the new payment system works, to mems and mean comments. It turns out that the new fee is much higher now than when it used to be charged in bolivars. The vice-president Delcy Rodríguez decided to release an official statement on the new prices of passport fees in Petro that now can easily be found on the Vice-president Office’s official Twitter account.

Horrendous prices

According to the Rodríguez’s statement the costs of passport fees from Monday 8th of October will stand at 2 petros for a new passport and 1 petro for the extension, which is reportedly an equivalent to around 7,200 and 3,600 sovereign bolivars. Considering the fact that the minimum wage (recently raised up) equals 1,800 sovereign bolivars, the purchase of a passport might be too much for a lot of Venezuelans.

“In the case of Venezuelans who are abroad, until the first day of November the cost will be $200 for issuance and $100 for extensions” Rodriguez stated.

Higher prices of passports mean that more and more Venezuelans will be trying to leave the country illegally in order to find a better-paid job and a safer more economically-secure country to live in. It is said that up to 5,000 people flee Venezuela every day. That leaves to discussion if the decision about making Petro the only currency for passport fees was a good decision.



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