Venezuela Calls US Sanctions Against Its Petro Cryptocurrency Discriminatory
Venezuela is pushing back against U.S. sanctions prior to the World Trade Organization, such as ones levied against its contentious cryptocurrency efforts.
The complaint, filed late last month and released this week, addresses a number of actions taken by the U.S. in recent years, claims that the country is infringing on Venezuela’s rights under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) signed in 1994 and the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). Especially, the complaint notes particular restrictions placed upon”Venezuelan digital currency” transactions.
“The United States has imposed certain coercive trade-restrictive steps on the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in the context of attempts to isolate Venezuela economically,” the complaint reads.
Venezuela first announced it was developing a cryptocurrency, the petro, near the end of 2017. The currency was started in 2018 and has since been ordered into use within many different industries by the country’s strongman president, Nicolas Maduro.
However, the controversial token has witnessed pushback also, particularly by U.S. lawmakers, who have denounced the cryptocurrency, and more ardently by President Donald Trump, who signed an executive order arrangement the petro past March.
Venezuela’s criticism asserts that these sanctions are”discriminatory coercive trade-restrictive measures”
Specifically, the complaint explains, the steps mean Venezuelan financial services and financial service providers get”less favorable” treatment compared to services and suppliers in other WTO member countries.
For that reason, such measures are in breach of Article II:1 of the GATS, which claims that no member nation will take care of another manhood less favorably than another nation, according to Venezuela.
The complaint goes on to say:
“Furthermore, inasmuch as digital currencies originating in the United States are not subject to the same prohibitions as Venezuelan digital currencies, the United States is according less favorable treatment to Venezuelan financial services and service suppliers than to like domestic financial services and service suppliers, in violation of Article XVII:1 of the GATS.”