The mass adoption of Petro in Venezuela might have started. According to the official statement of the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV), between December 18th, 2019 and January 3rd, 2020, more than two and a half million transactions were recorded on BiopagoBDV and more than one million people made payments in Petro in 7,422 Venezuelan stores.
Given the high volume of transactions, BCV had to carry out maintenance work on its BiopagoBDV channel, which took place from January 4th to January 7th, with the aim of strengthening the ecosystem of the new digital economy in Venezuela.
In mid-December, an airdrop of Petro tokens was announced, enabling all Venezuelans registered on the PetroApp platform to receive a Christmas bonus of half a Petro.
After the airdrop, the Venezuelans ran to spend the newly received money. This started the mass phenomenon mentioned above.
According to reports, however, the acceptance of Petro as currency for payments would not be such a big deal.
On the contrary, a Handbag.io manager, Eduardo Gomez, said:
“The traders are compelled to just accept the Petro as fee at a hard and fast fee (2.five million VES/PTR), while you’ll purchase the token within the open marketplace for as little as 1 million VES/PTR”.
This is why there are many sell orders for PTR on the free market and almost no buy orders. In addition, merchants are obliged to accept the token, de facto having to apply a 50% discount on goods paid in PTR, as they do not collect PTR but VES, at the exchange rate mentioned above.
To date, the value of a PTR is around $60, but merchants collect only 38.2, in Bolivar, also because it is explicitly forbidden to increase prices to those who pay in PTR.
In the 16 days between December 18th and January 3rd, an average of almost 160,000 transactions per day was carried out, which is still less than, for example, the approximately 300,000 bitcoin transactions per day.
However, while Petro, unlike bitcoin, is used to all intents and purposes as an alternative to the fiat currency in the country, these transactions took place in a single country. Probably 160,000 transactions per day are not that many for a fiat currency, but for a digital currency, they are many, considering that they took place in only one country.