Mexico's Drug War
Syria Civil War
Christian Science Monitor
Economist Intelligence Unit
La Prensa (Panamá)
National (Abu Dhabi)
New York Times
Radio France Internationale
Times of London
Hugo Chávez's daughter poses with US dollars|
Jan. 26, 2012 14:55 GMT — Caracas, Venezuela
Published by GlobalPost
A picture of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's teenage daughter fanning out US dollar bills has appeared on the Instagram website, focusing attention on her father's controversial economic policies which have led to a shortage of greenbacks back home.
Foreign currency in Venezuela is extremely scarce thanks to currency controls that limit individual exchange to just $3,000 per year. The policy was brought in nine years ago in order to clamp down on capital flight but has instead forced a black market which often sees trade at between 8 and 9 Bolívares Fuertes (BsF) to the dollar rather than 4.3 BsF — the fixed rate.
Venezuelans therefore must either forego foreign holidays and business trips costing more than $3,000 or buy dollars at the black market rate and lose half of their cash to the unfavorable exchange rate.
Cadivi is the government agency responsible for official exchange and is often criticised for corruption, whereby those who know the right people can go over their annual limit of dollar purchases.
The 14-year-old Rosinés Chávez Rodríguez flaunts the notes in front of her face in a picture most likely taken on an Apple product such as an iPhone or iPad. Marisabel Rodríguez, Rosinés' mother, now divorced from the president, defended her daughter's actions on Twitter. "The mistake wasn't to take the picture," she wrote, "but to post it on a medium where there are ignorant people."
The black market is favorable to those living in Venezuela paid in foreign currency. They often take advantage of the parallel rate to buy local currency at the inflated rate of between 8 and 9 BsF to the dollar. International purchases — flights, for example — bought with local currency on the black market are therefore roughly half price.
Government announces new taxes on luxury goods
Nov. 20, 2014 00:00 GMT
Foreign minister visits oil allies
Nov. 13, 2014 00:00 GMT
Finance minister nixes possible devaluation
Nov. 11, 2014 00:00 GMT
Petrol smuggling on the Colombia-Venezuela border
Nov. 10, 2014 07:00 GMT
Could Low Oil Prices End Venezuela's Revolution?
Nov. 03, 2014 12:00 GMT
Venezuela still worst place to do business in the Americas
Oct. 30, 2014 00:00 GMT
PDVSA scraps sale of Citgo
Oct. 28, 2014 15:30 GMT
FDI dropped sharply in first-half 2014
Oct. 28, 2014 12:00 GMT
The president’s approval ratings continue to slide
Oct. 23, 2014 12:00 GMT
Oil price slump pushing economy to the brink
Oct. 22, 2014 12:00 GMT
Venezuela to receive first ever imports of crude oil
Oct. 21, 2014 15:00 GMT
Can new leader jumpstart Venezuela's struggling opposition?
Oct. 14, 2014 20:00 GMT
Lack of flights leaves Venezuelans seeking more inventive ways out
Oct. 12, 2014 06:00 GMT
Venezuela ordered to pay compensation for expropriations
Oct. 10, 2014 00:00 GMT
Venezuela’s New Opposition Leader Jesús Torrealba Takes on the Chavistas
Oct. 09, 2014 21:11 GMT