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Venezuelan Bolivar Collapses Amid Severing Commercial Ties With Panama - Reports

© REUTERS / Ueslei MarcelinoA cashier counts Venezuelan bolivar notes at a street market in downtown Caracas, Venezuela
A cashier counts Venezuelan bolivar notes at a street market in downtown Caracas, Venezuela - Sputnik International
MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) - Venezuelan bolivar exchange rate collapsed on the black market, exceeding for the first time 300,000 bolivars per US dollar after the authorities decided to impose financial and economic sanctions against Panama, local media reported.

US dollar is now worth 305,000 bolivars, up from 231,000 bolivars in late March and 250,000 bolivars a few days ago, according to the Dolar Today website, which is monitoring the situation on the black market.

On Thursday, Venezuela announced that it was halting commercial relations with Panamanian officials and companies, banning dozens of them in response. The 90-day ban concerns 22 Panamanian individuals and 46 Panama-based legal entities.

READ MORE: Venezuela Grounds Flights by Panama's Flag Carrier Copa

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Last week, Panama put Maduro on a watch list. It is comprised of 55 Venezuelans suspected of such offenses as terrorism financing and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Venezuela's interior minister, the chief prosecutor and the supreme justice were among those targeted.

A difficult economic situation in Venezuela resulted in rapid inflation. On March 23, President Nicolas Maduro announced the denomination of Bolivar set for June 4.

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