BOGOTA, Colombia – Venezuela is issuing higher-denominated bills as triple-digit inflation and a currency meltdown leave the country's largest note worth just around 2 U.S. cents on the black market.
The central bank in a statement Saturday said that six new bills ranging from 500 to 20,000 Bolivars will begin circulating on Dec. 15.
The oil-producing nation tightly controls access to American dollars. That means most Venezuelans must turn to the black market to acquire hard currency.
Currently the largest-denominated bill is 100 bolivars while a single U.S. dollar is worth as much as 4,400 bolivars according to the Dolar Today website that tracks the currency's value on the black market.
Adding to the currency woes, cash has become harder to find and on Friday the nation's credit card payment system froze up.