Executive Order 13808, issued on August 24, 2017, was designed to put pressure on the Venezuelan government by prohibiting U.S. persons, or anyone within the U.S., from extending new debt to the Venezuelan government with a maturity greater than 30 days, or to Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (“PDVSA”) with a maturity greater than 90 days. The E.O. also prohibited U.S. persons or those in the U.S. from dealings in bonds or securities issued by the Government of Venezuela or from paying any dividend to the Government of Venezuela.
In part to counteract the effects of E.O. 13808, on January 9, 2018 President Maduro of Venezuela announced that Venezuela would issue its own crypto-currency, the Petro, which would be backed by the country’s petroleum reserves. This move was designed to minimize the impact of the U.S. prohibition on the extension of new debt and to create a new means of payments for goods and services. In response, on March 19th President Trump issued Executive Order 13827, which prohibits U.S. persons and persons within the U.S. from providing financing for or engaging in any dealings in “any digital currency, digital coin or digital token” issued by Venezuela on or after January 9, 2018, which includes the Petro. To read the full client alert CLICK HERE