Economic impact of the war in Venezuela | Pasqualina Curcio

We have updated the amount of economic loss in Venezuela as a result of the imperial war. It amounts to 258.095 million dollars between 2016 and until 2020. For us Venezuelans, that is equivalent to 60 years of importing food and medicine, or twice the payment of the foreign debt, or 2 year and 1 months of national production. They are 9 million dollars of annual losses on average. It has been a criminal, ruthless, inhuman war.

The 258.095 million dollars correspond to what we have stopped producing these 5 years (233.182 million dollars) plus the money that they have withheld and blocked in the international financial system, including the assets of Citgo and the gold that is in England (24.913 millions of dollars).

Imperialism has known how to hit us, and it has done it precisely, it has targeted the heart of any economy, exports and currency. It is the perfect combination of two weapons to suffocate the villages. They know it, not by chance they are an essential part of their historical unconventional warfare manuals.

Of the 233.182 million dollars that we have stopped producing, 58.842 million have been a direct consequence of the fall in exports which, in our country are historically and mainly [1] (95%) oil. They began by manipulating oil prices which, for the first time in history, fell for 4 consecutive years, from 103,46 US $ / barrel in 2012 to 34,02 US $ / barrel in 2016. Starting in 2017, the prices began to recover. hydrocarbon prices, but remember that it was that year when Donald

Trump made the blockade against PDVSA official and issued Executive Order 13.808 against the oil industry, which has implied not only the difficulty of placing our oil in international markets, but also and above all to import raw materials and technology, directly affecting the production levels that have fallen 76% since 2017, from 2.372.000 to 568.000 barrels per day (Opep).

In Venezuela, as in any country in the world, exports have a direct impact on production levels, and we are not referring exclusively to the drop in oil production that corresponds only to 15% of GDP, but to the rest of national production due to that, by reducing exports, the income of foreign currency to the country decreases and, therefore, the possibility of importing inputs, raw materials, spare parts and technology for non-oil production. Between 2016 and 2020 we have stopped exporting US $ 98.526 million as a result of the blockade of PDVSA which, together with mismanagement and corruption within the industry, has implied US $ 58.842 million less in national production between 2016 and 2020.

The other US $ 174.339 million that we have stopped producing between 2016 and 2020 are explained by the attack on the bolivar, the most powerful weapon in any economic war, which we unveiled in 2016 when we published the book “The visible hand of the market. Economic war in Venezuela ”. Weapon that was later, in 2019, confessed by US Senator Richard Black.

We remember how this lethal weapon works and what is the sequence in the attack:

1) Imperialism manipulates the exchange rate of the bolivar with respect to the dollar through the media, web portals and social networks, inducing the depreciation of our currency. From 2013 until today, 5.178.365.937.759% have attacked our bolivar: in 2013 we gave 8,69 BsF / US $ and today we must give 450.000.000.000 BsF / US $ (equivalent to 4,5 BsD / US $). The attack has undoubtedly been criminal. There is no way to explain this “depreciation” with economic theories, the numbers do not give, the explanation is political, and more than political, war, it has been a vile manipulation by way of altering the monetary scale.

2) The higher exchange rate, even fictitious, serves as a reference for industrialists and merchants to set the price in bolivars of merchandise, inducing inflation of 671.045.856.034% between January 2013 and October 2021 (BCV).

3) As the legal minimum wage has only increased 16.867.469.780% during the same period, the purchasing power of the working class, which is 95% of the employed population, has been pulverized 99%, to the point that, while the basic food basket It has a price of 1.727 BsD, the minimum wage is still 7 BsD. This situation has implied a fall in the quantity of goods and services demanded. According to the BCV, between 2014 and 2018, household consumption fell 50%. Most likely, the drop has been greater than today. For this reason, the importance of wages increasing in the same proportion as the prices of goods and services in order to avoid the loss of purchasing power of workers, and the need then for indexation to neutralize the effect of the attack on the bolivar.

4) Because the budget for public spending for health, education, transportation, basic services, etc., is approved in bolivars and is not adjusted each time prices increase, a budget insufficiency is generated that affects performance and quality of the services provided by the public administration, making this cost, incidentally, fall on Venezuelan households. Public spending in 2013 represented 33% of GDP, today it does not reach 3%, which has also implied a drop in the quantities demanded by the public administration [1], which according to the BCV has been 30% between 2013 and 2018, surely higher to date. Here the need to index the spending budget of the public administration.

5) Both the fall in the quantities demanded of goods by households and by the government (according to the BCV it has been 62% between 2013 and 2018) has forced the suppliers, owners of the companies, to reduce the levels of production because they do not have someone to buy their merchandise, which is why US $ 174.339 million has stopped being produced between 2016 and 2020, a consequence, on the one hand, of the attack on the bolivar that has induced inflation and, on the other, of the no proportional adjustment of salary and public spending.

The central problem is not the US $ 233.182 million that have not been produced as a result of the war, but what that amount means for each Venezuelan woman, man, child and elderly in their day to day life, in their good living that it is what, ultimately, is interested in affecting imperialism.

The central problem is that, despite the fact that we are producing less and that the pie to be distributed is smaller, it is being distributed in an increasingly unequal way between workers and the bourgeoisie, precisely because while prices increase the nominal wage and public spending has remained frozen. According to the BCV, in 2014 the bourgeoisie appropriated 31% of GDP and workers 36%, while in 2017 the percentages were 50% and 18% respectively. Inequality that is the determining cause of poverty. Beyond the numbers, that is the impact that truly matters and worries.

 

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