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Minister Rodriguez Araque: We are in better conditions than many others in the region and in the world

The fall of Venezuela’s GDP is inferior to that of other nations in the South American region as well as in Europe.

“There was a reduction in the economy’s performance, but it is not a dramatic fall. We are better in better conditions  than many others in the region and in the world”.

This is how the Minister of People’s Power for Economy and Finance, Alí Rodríguez Araque, replied to pessimistic announcements made by some media outlets after the Banco Central de Venezuela (Venezuelan Central Bank or BCV) disclosed the fall of 1% in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the second quarter of 2009, "after following 22 straight semesters of growth," stated the Minister.

Rodríguez Araque stated that the country has suffered greater cutbacks to its economy, and that is why he did not doubt on vowing that the economy would recover promptly. “We shouldn’t forget that for 5 consecutive years a steady climb was achieved, as opposed to the world economy”.

Rodríguez Araque assured that the government’s policies towards social issues remain unaltered because  “in Venezuela, not only the government is affected by the downfall of the economy, but the whole population and businessmen as well. That is what we are trying to avoid. However, the people have not felt this fall in the GDP, because even the private sector has kept on growing. The number of businesses created in the last years is close to 90%”.

Finally, Rodríguez Araque expressed that the results of this last trimester did not imply that Venezuela is entering in recession. "The National Government policies towards financial development, continues to be concentrated in social issues," said the Minister.

The BCV Report

A report recently made by the BCV showed that Venezuela’s economy fell 1% in the first quarter of the year in the mists of a global financial crisis after 22 straight semesters of growth. This way, the GDP fell 2.4% for the second quarter, and when averaged with a 0.5% growth in the first quarter, comes to a fall of 1% in the last six months.

The Bank pronounced that this economic setback is due to “the decrease in the oil (1.6%) and non-oil industries (4.2%)”.

Between those sectors that grew we can find the construction industry (4.2%), community, social and personal services (4.3%), and media (7.6%), while the manufacturing industry fell (8.5%) and the commerce sector (6.5%)

Radio Nacional de Venezuela, Press Unit of the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United States/ August 21, 2009.

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