On the other hand, the use of soldiers and police to guard Venezuelan supermarkets could be a tacit admission by the Maduro administration that the economy is crumbling due to falling oil prices, so that even the most basic goods can be worth fighting over. Venezuela’s dire economic straits are a key reason the country is considered by In Sight Crime to be highly susceptible to organized crime’s influence and facing a deteriorating security situation.

Venezuela is in the midst of an unprecedented economic and political crisis marked by severe food and medicine shortages, soaring crime rates, and an increasingly authoritarian executive. Critics of President Nicolas Maduro and his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, say Venezuela’s economic woes are the fruit of years of economic mismanagement; Maduro’s supporters blame falling oil prices and the country’s “corrupt” business elites.Venezuela is highly vulnerable to external shocks due to its heavy dependence on oil revenues. Oil accounts for about 95 percent of Venezuela's export earnings and 25 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP), according to figures from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).The state-run petroleum company, Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA), controls all the country’s oil exploration, production, and exportation. Critics say PDVSA is grossly mismanaged and suffers from cronyism, a bloated payroll, underinvestment in infrastructure, and a lack of budgetary oversight.As global oil prices fell from $111 per barrel in 2014 to a low of $27 per barrel in 2016, Venezuela’s already shaky economy went into free fall. That year, GDP dropped 10 to 15 percent and inflation soared to 800 percent. By early 2017, the country owed $140 billion to foreign creditors while it held only $10 billion in reserves, raising fears of a default.Venezuela’s proved oil reserves was estimated at 300.9 billion barrels at the end of 2015, according to BP’s BP, -0.20% Statistical Revenue of World Energy June 2016. That’s below Saudi Arabia’s 266.6 billion and much less than the U.S.’s 55 billion.But it cost Venezuela about $27.62 to produce a barrel of oil and natural gas in 2016:That ranks it as fourth in terms of major producers who pay the most to get the commodities out of the ground.And profits have been cut significantly in recent years

.Venezuela Offshore Rig Count is at a current level of 4.00, down from 5.00 last month and up from 1.00 one year ago. This is a change of -20.00% from last month and 300.0% from one year ago. .Contractors have cut back the drilling of oil in Venezuela amid a rising unpaid debt owed to suppliers by the Latin American country’s government and state-owned producer PDVSA.

Crude Oil Production in Venezuela decreased to 2100 BBL/D/1K in August from 2117 BBL/D/1K in July of 2017. Crude Oil Production in Venezuela averaged 2422.74 BBL/D/1K from 1973 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 3453 BBL/D/1K in December of 1997 and a record low of 594 BBL/D/1K in January of 2003.

The Venezuelan crisis of 1902–03 was a naval blockade from December 1902 to February 1903 imposed against Venezuela by the United Kingdom, Germany and Italy, over President Cipriano Castro's refusal to pay foreign debts and damages suffered by European citizens in the Venezuelan civil war. Castro assumed that the United States' Monroe Doctrine would see the US prevent European military intervention, but at the time, US president Theodore Roosevelt and the Department of State saw the Doctrine as concerning European seizure of territory, rather than intervention "per se". With prior promises that no such seizure would occur, the US allowed the action to go ahead without objection. The blockade saw Venezuela's small navy quickly disabled, but Castro refused to give in, and instead agreed in principle to submit some of the claims to international arbitration, which he had previously rejected. Germany initially objected to this, particularly as it felt some claims should be accepted by Venezuela without arbitration.This led to the signing of an agreement on 13 February 1903 which saw the blockade lifted, and Venezuela commit 30% of its customs duties to settling claims. When the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague subsequently awarded preferential treatment to the blockading powers against the claims of other nations, the US feared this would encourage future European intervention. The episode contributed to the development of the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine, asserting a right of the United States to intervene to "stabilize" the economic affairs of small states in the Caribbean and Central America if they were unable to pay their international debts, in order to preclude European intervention to do so.

Food shortages sparks protests in streets of Caracas. President Nicolas Maduro has ordered Venezuela’s security forces to maintain order in supermarkets and food distribution sites, highlighting how the country has prioritized political-driven security issues over efforts to lower one of the world’s highest homicide rates.Opposition members stage a sit-in on a highway during a protest against President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, Venezuela, April 24, 2017. Thousands of protesters shut down the capital city's main highway to express their disgust with the increasingly embattled administration of President Nicolas Maduro. Protesters in at least a dozen other cities also staged sit-ins as the protest movement is entering.

Venezuelan bond yields stay elevated and costs depressed after President Maduro staged an influence seize final week, urgent forward with the formation of a constituent meeting that may rewrite the nation’s structure after a broadly discredited election.In response to Mr Maduro’s obduracy and the jailing of opposition politicians Leopoldo López and Antonio Ledezma the US has imposed recent sanctions on a number of Venezuelan officers.Caracas’ debt has emerged as a flashpoint in the crisis. The buy of $2.8bn value of Venezuelan bonds from the state oil firm, PDVSA, by the asset administration arm of Goldman Sachs earlier this yr attracted heavy criticism from the nation’s opposition arguing that they constituted “hunger bonds” that assist help the autocratic authorities.Now Credit Suisse has banned buying and selling in a sovereign difficulty due in 2036 and PDVSA’s bond maturing in 2022   the difficulty bought by GSAM. The financial institution mentioned it will additionally prohibit buying and selling in any bonds issued after June 1 from any Venezuelan entity.The central bank said that six new bills ranging from 500 to 20,000 bolivars would come into circulation .Currently the largest note is 100 bolivars and worth about two US cents.Over the past month, the currency has tumbled by 60% against the dollar on the black market.This will make the payments system more efficient, facilitate commercial transactions and minimize the costs of production, replacement and transfer which will translate into benefits for banking, trade and the general population.

Police officers charge an anti-government protesters in Caracas, Venezuela, April 24, 2017. Thousands of people shut down the capital city's main highway to express their disgust with the socialist administration of President Nicolas Maduro.Bolivarian National Police officers ride away on a motorcycle with a detained anti-government protester, in Caracas, Venezuela, April 24, 2017. Opponents to President Nicolas Maduro shut down main roads around the country as the protest movement against his administration is entering its fourth week.

Chavez, a former military officer who launched an ill-fated coup in 1992, was elected president of Venezuela in 1998 on a populist platform. As a candidate, he railed against the country’s elites for widespread corruption, and pledged to use Venezuela’s vast oil wealth to reduce poverty and inequality. During his presidency, which lasted until his death in 2013, Chavez expropriated millions of acres of land and nationalized hundreds of private businesses and foreign-owned assets, including oil projects run by ExxonMobil and ConocoPhillips. Chavez, whose rhetoric often drew inspiration from Simon Bolivar, the Venezuela-born revolutionary of the nineteenth century, aimed to align Latin American countries against the United States. He led the formation of ALBA, a bloc of socialist and leftist Latin American governments, and established the Petrocaribe alliance, in which Venezuela agreed to export petroleum at discounted rates to eighteen Central American and Caribbean states.Chavez also greatly expanded the powers of the presidency. Shortly after he took office, voters approved a new constitution that allowed him to run for another term, removed one chamber of Congress, and reduced civilian control over the military. In 2004, two years after he was briefly removed from office in a coup, Chavez effectively took control of the Supreme Court by expanding its size and appointing twelve justices. In 2009, he led a successful referendum ending presidential term limits. Meanwhile, the Maduro administration retains the support of allies in Bolivia, Ecuador, and several Caribbean nations. China has lent Venezuela more than $60 billion since 2001, and is the South American country’s largest creditor. Meanwhile, Venezuela has sought significant ties with Russia. Before oil prices fell in 2014, Venezuela was set to become the largest importer of Russian military equipment by 2025. In February 2017, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov reaffirmed Moscow’s support for the Maduro government, saying bilateral relations “are on the rise.”

Venezuela After Chávez,After seventeen years of Chavista rule in Venezuela, the right-wing opposition has now swept the board in elections to the country’s National Assembly, giving rise to a political deadlock.The Maduro government’s heavy defeat was obviously related to the economic crisis that Venezuela is going through. What are the main features of that crisis

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