The Law against Illegal Currency Exchanges was published in the Venezuelan Official Gazette on 28 December 2007. The Law came into force on 27 January 2008.
One of the most controversial articles is No 19, which states that any individual or company who tenders to buy, sale or hire goods or services in foreign currency will be subject to a fine twice the amount of the offer in Venezuelan Bolivars. If the offer involves public authorities, the fine will be applied to both the individual or company who advertised the offer and the public sector worker who validated or registered the document containing the offer.
At the moment, the debate is whether offers in foreign currency are allowed in Venezuela. A strict interpretation would mean that any offers of purchase, sale, hire and performance of services are subject to a fine. The article does not affect reinsurance contracts taken by Venezuelans abroad, but insurance taken out in Venezuela, if paid in foreign currency, may be in breach of article 19.