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Venezuela demonetizes its largest banknote 100 bolivar

The Venezuelan government has demonetized its largest banknote, the 100 bolivar bill, which will be replaced with coins within 72 hours.

The Venezuela’s move to outlaw its highest currency came 33 days after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s surpise announcement on November 8 to demonetise Rs 1000 and Rs 500 notes, in his government’s effort to stop tax evasion and underreporting of cash on hand

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro signed an emergency decree ordering the country’s highest-denomination banknotes taken out of circulation to thwart “mafias” he accused of hoarding cash in Colombia.

The announcement came Sunday as the government of Venezuela — a country in the midst of an economic crisis – prepares to issue new banknotes and coins in values up to 200 times the highest denomination currently available.

Earlier this month, the central bank said that six new bills ranging from 500 to 20,000 bolivars would come into circulation on 15 December. President Nicolas Maduro says gangs that operate in border areas will not have time to repatriate the money.

The 100-bolivar bill has lost most of its value over the past few years and is now worth about 2 cents (£0.015).

One bill can barely cover the cost of a piece of candy, while a stack of 50 notes is needed to buy a hamburger.