Friday, March 08, 2013

Oil and Aspirations

Venezuela is an oil-rich nation. Venezuelan Jesuit, Raúl González Fabre, noted in 2008:
The last ninety years of Venezuelan history cannot be understood without reference to oil. As in all countries with a legal tradition of Spanish origin, the wealth under Venezuela’s soil belongs to the State. This means that the Venezuelan state derives an income from oil that is generous but as volatile as oil prices themselves.
Following his explanation of Venezuela’s “one-product economy,” Fabre described the ascendancy of recently deceased Hugo Chavez, and his “failure to modernize [Venezuela] during Chávez’s time in power.” His essay is worth reading to understand the situation with which Chávez’s successor must deal.
Wiki-image of coat of arms of Venezuela in the public domain.

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