The Senate bill 1025, which will be approved soon, will make law Trump’s executive order banning U.S permanent residents, U.S citizens and organizations from holding, buying, spending, or trading Venezuela’s cryptocurrency – Petro.
Since Trump presented Petro as a way for users to evade U.S sanctions against Venezuela, whose Central Bank of recent has seen decades of hyperinflation and has been blamed for crimes against humanity, 19 sponsors have been attracted by the law, including Marco Rubio (Florida’s Republican senator), Richard Durbin (the Democratic senator of Illinois), Ted Cruz (Republican senator of Texas), Lindsey Graham (Republican senator of South Carolina), and Kristen Gillibrand (the Democratic senator of New York).
Petro, in contrast to state-issued currencies, could be acquired and spent easily on goods all over the world just like Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Imagine buying a pair of shoes and paying for it with Petro just as easy as downloading an app from Google Playstore.
Compared to other blockchain bills, this particular one – Senate bill 1025, which is officially referred to as VERDAD (Venezuela Emergency Relief, Democracy Assistance, and Development Act of 2019), considered by the United States lawmakers, could be a big reason for concern for other Cryptocurrencies.
If Trump’s executive order happens, then Petro becomes the first crypto to be banned in the U.S., and according to Brett, who was once a lead associate at Booz Allen Hamilton, said that this ban could make future bans on other cryptocurrencies come easy.
Brett who joined ConsenSys (an Ethereum startup) after parting ways with Booz Allen, said that: “The implications for this are huge because it could be Bitcoin or some other cryptocurrency inserted into this language. We’re talking about a road map for how to ban a particular cryptocurrency.”
While the United States has previously permitted the legal use of cryptocurrency to perform transactions, so far the payment of taxes conforms with the existing regulations of the IRS related to commodities, other countries have been very aggressive placing bans similar to that of the VERDAD Act.
This is why the VERDAD Act is very interesting. It includes the reasons behind the law placed to ban the cryptocurrency, “narcotics trafficking, public corruption, and money laundering,” which are very good reasons for most Americans to consent to.
However, like China, Venezuela, and other countries that would desire the drop in position of the U.S. dollar as global reserve begins to explore cryptocurrency, this asset will become both a possible threat and a possible solution.
Since the executive order to ban Petro was signed by Trump, Facebook has announced its plan to co-create Libra (a cryptocurrency that has the backing of central bank assets), which has led the Congress to raise its hackles against cryptocurrency, even more, Brett says.
Just last week, Congress held three hearings concerning cryptocurrency, and Brett believes that the pace will increase even more, as state governments and giant corporations continue to adopt digital assets.
Brett also noticed that asides VERDAD, there were seventeen (17) other bills relating to blockchain in the House of Representatives and 2 bills in the senate.
Brett says: “Now is the time to pay attention. And the fact is because there are 20 active bills that could be impacted and could change in some way shape or form along the way, it’s very important that we watch them, almost like the weather map.”