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Foreign Minister Maduro: Bank of the South represents region's financial independence

“The Bank of the South is a key project for all Latin Americans because it will be the first step towards building financial independence in the region.  That is why we want the bank to begin operations in the second quarter of the year,” said Foreign Minister Nicolás Maduro.

He made this statement in an interview with Argentinean newspaper ‘Pagina 12’ during a visit to the Republic of Argentina.  Minister Maduro went to Argentina to take part in the fifth meeting of the Permanent Mixed Commission between the two countries.

The Minister affirmed that the crisis is becoming a historic occasion, an opportunity for Latin America to break free from the perverse mechanisms that destroyed its economies.

“We broke from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in time; now we have to take advantage of the occasion to break free from the perversity of the dollar, which caused a lot of harm to our economies,” Maduro declared.

Based on this, he said it is time to discuss the productive capacities of each country, and the way to unite and become complementary so as to satisfy the basic needs of the region’s peoples.

“The measures to protect our economies should correspond with the needs of each country, with the needs to protect our jobs, to guarantee food [and] internal consumption,” he emphasized.

Minister Maduro emphasized that Latin America is currently strong and more prepared than ever to face this systematic crisis that will shake the foundations of the global economy over the next few years.

“The crisis will provoke a new global repositioning, a new international order.  One of the topics will be money, international reserves.  In the case of Venezuela, the President has announced a set of policies to defend employment and maintain investment levels.  Venezuela, in the midst of this international crisis, has managed to reduce unemployment to 7% for the first time in 30 years,” the Foreign Minister explained.

Finally, Minister Maduro noted that those who continue to argue that a solution to the crisis is to re-fund and reorient the International Monetary Fund are asking for the impossible and are ignoring reality.

Agencia Bolivariana de Noticias, Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Press Office / March 27, 2009

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