Saturday, 2 April 2016

A day in the life of a good engineer in Venezuela

Prices of most important household products are regulated in Venezuela of the "21 Century Socialism". The government does this at the same time as it keeps three currency exchange rates and currency controls that generate much more corruption and at the same time it keeps printing bank notes as if no one in the government knew anything about basic economics.

The horrible shortages product of these stupid economic policies have led the government to force citizens to buy controlled products only two days a week according to the last digit of their ID.

This is the account I got from a couple in Valencia. These friends are two formerly middle-class engineers who now can be classified simply as poor.

My time for shopping according to my ID was on Monday. I didn't find sugar, maize or wheat flour, rice, pasta, milk, butter, soap, tooth paste or shampoo in the main supermarkets. My husband went to queue up in front of the drugstore at 4 am. He got position 80. I got there at 7 am, shortly before the shop opened. When there were only 30 persons before me, the drugstore didn't have any more products with regulated prices.

I decided then to go to the Chinese shop as I had heard a lorry with pasta had arrived. I waited there from 10 to 1pm but I couldn't get anything when black market vendors tried to jump the queue and fighting broke out.

I gave up as I had to pick up our daughter from school.

Most of the people I see in the shops are actually from Southern Valencia, from towns of Güigüe, Miranda, Puerto Cabello, etc [a region with over 2 million people] because they do not find anything where they live.

She is one of the many who lost her job last year and she does little jobs here and there. There is no jobseeker allowance in Venezuela. Still, we  have 33% of the population that is still Chavista, just like 2, 3 years ago. They even believe things are worse in Spain.

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