Global Processing

Chavez says low oil price could hurt Venezuela

November 17, 2008

Venezuela will suffer if world oil prices keep falling, President Hugo Chavez said, in an unusual acknowledgment of how the global financial crisis is hurting the OPEC nation, as reported by Reuters. Venezuela, one of the largest oil exporters to the United States, is a price hawk in OPEC. The government relies on crude for about half of its revenue, which it spends freely on the majority poor. Chavez has accumulated foreign reserves and organized loans from nations such as China to shield his socialist government from a protracted fall in income. Chavez initially reveled in the financial collapses in the United States. But as the crisis has widened to hit economies worldwide and caused oil prices in recent weeks to plunge he has begun to warn Venezuelans of the possible impact at home.