Venezuela’s economic situation continues to get worse every day. The South American nation has been struggling for quite a while and a turn for the better appears to be nowhere in sight.
The economic situation began back in 2014 with the drop in oil prices. Measures and changes by the government haven’t turned out well for the South American nation. In just a few years, the country has gone from having a stable economy to record levels of inflation.
The situation has gotten so bad that the population has turned to other South American nations. Countries such as Chile, Colombia and Peru have become the new home for many Venezuelans.
Estimates say around 5,000 people decide to leave the country every day. Those estimates from the UN and other organizations say that around 3 million Venezuelans have left the country in recent years. That is a high number for a country that is not involved in a conflict. But the UN says those numbers will only get higher this year.
The UN says the number of people that have exited the country will be over five million by the end of the year. The situation has caused a humanitarian crisis in neighboring countries such as Colombia. Shelters have been set up for those coming in but it is sometimes not enough. The situation in Venezuela has been a big topic among South American countries and it will likely continue this year.
The economy appears to be worse even after the changes introduced by the government just a few months ago. The removal of the five zeroes off the currency has not stopped the high levels of inflation. The government also released new bills to keep up but those appear to be falling short.
The government also appears to be headed for another long term. Nicolas Maduro will be sworn in on January 10. Last year, the government moved up the presidential elections and Maduro won another term. The decision to speed up the elections has been heavily criticized by the US and other. Some of the opposition also boycotted the vote and the municipal elections before that.
Maduro won those elections by a large difference but the videos and pictures of voting centers completely empty have brought doubts on the results. The company behind the voting machines has even put the numbers in doubt.
South American countries such as Peru, Ecuador and Chile have received a high percentage of Venezuelans fleeing the situation. All three have announced changes to their policies. Chile has introduced a democratic responsibility visa that can be requested only in Venezuela. Peru and Ecuador announced earlier this year that they would require passports instead of just an ID card. The announcement caused hundreds of Venezuelans to rush to the countries.
South American countries have heavily discussed the situation since more and more people continue to arrive every day. Officials are calling for more help and pressure against the government, which plans to remain in power for at least six more years. The government also denies that the numbers are that high. Its vice president has even said that the migration levels are normal.
Venezuela has lost over ten percent of its population since 2015 and it appears that the country will continue losing more this year.