Media: Venezuela Converts Airport Taxes to Bitcoins to Bypass Economic Sanctions
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro may use tax and cryptocurrencies as part of a larger plan to bypass economic sanctions, CoinDesk writes, citing an investigation by Spanish newspaper ABC.
ABC reporters say they have been able to uncover a scheme in which Maduro and those associated with him use a wallet app to convert tax revenues to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. These assets are then supposedly sent to exchanges in Hong Kong, Hungary, Russia and China, where they are withdrawn to fiat, after which they go back to Venezuela..
According to ABC, the source of revenue is the International Airport of Maiketia (IAIM) near the capital of the country, Caracas. Tax collection is carried out by an automated system that works with an application called Jetman Pay.
There is also information that the Maduro administration expects to expand the capabilities of the application by adding funds received from refueling transit aircraft to the fees..
Under the terms of the not yet signed contract, the Jetman Pay app will be used to directly circumvent US sanctions. In the proposed scheme, an aircraft landing at IAIM will convert fiat currency into its fuel, and the state oil and gas company Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A will pay the tax using an application, which will then be transferred abroad in the form of cryptocurrency..
The automated taxation system has been in use at IAIM since February 2018.
The authors of the publication also suggest that Maduro may want to connect the rest of the country’s airports to this system..
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