The Crisis in Venezuela

Nicolas Maduro, the Venezuelan president, was sworn in on January 10 and will remain in office for another six years in the midst of the chaos going on in the country. The socialist president, Maduro, has been in office while Venezuela has experienced hyperinflation, famine, and disease in the last few years. Venezuela’s supply of oil makes it a popular country for other countries that want oil, and the oil is also the backbone of its economy; however, the falling oil price has caused the country’s economy to crash.

Venezuela’s economic crisis was caused by the falling prices of oil. A recent article entitled “Venezuela: The Rise and Fall of a Prestorate” by Rocio Cara Labrador noted that the price of oil decreased from over $100 per barrel in 2014 to a low of under $30 per barrel in 2016. In addition, “oil sales account for 98 percent of export earnings and as much as 50 percent of GDP”(Labrador). The falling oil output has greatly affected Venezuela’s GDP and economy in general, leading to drastic inflation. The country has also “missed billions of dollars in payments since 2017,” and suffers from hyperinflation at more than 80,000% (Labrador). The poverty rate has risen to about 90%, and it won’t be going down any time soon.

Maduro’s government controls the media and electoral authorities, leading some to accuse him of fraud. The increasing number of protests focused towards the quality of life and the scarcity of food and water reflect the majority of the country’s opinion towards him. Maduro is not the answer for Venezuela’s current problems, and the country needs another leader to save them.

 

Chaos has been ignited in the petrostate of Venezuela, and Maduro’s re-election will certainly not help the cause. In order for Venezuela to somehow rebound from this economic crash, they must find another source of income to slowly rebuild their economy from the ground up. Because most of the oil supply has run out in Venezuela, the country must seek another way to make money. The recent problems have been occuring while Maduro has been president in Venezuela, and he has certainly not helped to lessen any of the issues looming in the country.