Venezuela’s oil revenue has collapsed 99% over the last 6 years, President Nicolas Maduro said, blaming financial sanctions put in place by the United States for much of the loss.
The country is home to the world’s biggest oil reserves but has seen its economy shrink by more than half under Maduro, the political heir to leftist firebrand Hugo Chavez who died in 2013.
$30 billion have been lost each year since 2015, Maduro said on Tuesday, September 29, adding “it’s impossible to imagine the amount of pressure placed on our economy.”
“For every $100 obtained through oil sales in 2014 we receive $1 today,” which means oil revenues fell from more than $56 billion in 2013 “to less than $400 million last year.”
Venezuela’s socialist government is targeted by a slew of international sanctions, including a US oil embargo.
Between 2014 and 2019, Venezuela experienced the “sharpest” foreign exchange losses in its history, Maduro said.
“In 6 years, we lost 99% of our foreign exchange revenues.”
He added that the main reason for the huge drop in revenues was “the war declared on oil prices,” to “attack the world’s major producers,” and said his country’s economy and finances were being targeted.
Experts recognize sanctions have exacerbated the crisis in Venezuela, but say the main problem is poor economic management and corruption. (READ: Venezuela’s fuel shortages persist despite Iran deliveries)
A July report from private company Envoci said that in 2019, about 96% of households lived in poverty, up from about 92.6% the year before. (READ: Smuggled gasoline rescues Venezuelans running on fumes) – Rappler.com
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