The Nationalization of Venezuelan Oil

Published by PINR The power and interests news report, May 21, 2007.

On May 1, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced that the nationalization of the Venezuelan oil industry was complete, and that his country would formally withdraw from the International Monetary Fund (I.M.F.) and World Bank. Beginning with changes to tax rates on foreign companies in April 2006, and strengthened by his landslide election victory in December 2006, Chavez handed control of Venezuela’s oil operations to state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela SA (P.D.V.S.A.).

Since taking office in 1999, Chavez began to move away from the I.M.F. and World Bank. He attributes increased income inequality to the strict neoliberal policies of privatization and deregulation prescribed by both agencies. Having enjoyed ten consecutive quarters of high economic growth, including 8.8 percent growth in the first quarter of 2007, Venezuela was able to pay off the considerable amount of debt it owed years ahead of schedule … (full text).

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