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VZ News & Trade
VZ News & Trade
        ©2005 by rrurom                                                                                              ©2005 by LaguneXXX
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Business Etiquette
International Disputes
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Venezuela News in English
VenEconomy: Venezuela's leading bilingual business magazine,
Venezuela comprehensive listing of Venezuelan news sources.
Google News: Top Venezuela stories.
The Daily Journal: Venezuela's only English- newspaper
Miami Herald: Americas Page
Financial Times: Americas Page
Human Rights Watch: Venezuela Page
Amnesty International: Venezuela Page
OAS [Organization of American States]: Venezuela Page
Venezuela Information Office:  pro-Chavez blog aimed at the US

Most sophisticated pro-Chavez site.
The following organisations offer advice:
Venezuelan – American Chamber of Commerce
2332 Galiano Street, Coral Gables, FL 33134
Tel: (305) 728-7042
Fax: (305) 728-7043
CONAPRI, Consejo Nacional de Promoción de Invensiones (National Council for Investment Promotion), Edificio Forum, Local LC-A (planta baja), Calle Guaicaipuro, El Rosal, Caracas 1060 (tel: (212) 951 6507 or 3692 or 953 4732; fax: (212) 953 3915;
FEDECAMARAS, Federación Venezolana de Cámaras y Asociaciones de Comercio y Producción (Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry), Apartado 2568, Edificio Fedecámaras, Pent-House 2, Avenida El Empalme, El Bosque, Caracas (tel: (212) 731 1711; fax: (2) 730 2097;
Oil fields of Venezuela
Hugo Chávez
Bolivarian Revolution,
democratic socialism
Fifth Republic Movement
Simón Bolívar
Revolutionary Bolivarian Movement-200
Bolivarian Missions,
Washington Consensus
Venezuelan National Assembly
FTAA On March 4, 2005, Chávez publicly declared that the U.S.-backed Free Trade Area of the Americas  was "dead." Chávez stated that the neoliberal model of development had utterly failed in improving the lives of Latin Americans, and that an alternative, anti-capitalist model would be conceived in order to increase trade and relations between Venezuela, Argentina and Brazil. Chávez also stated his desire that a leftist, Latin American analogue of NATO be established....
2012 The BBC says that Chavez "has made no secret of the fact that he is in favour of amending the constitution so that he can run again for president in 2012."[75]
G.W.Bush-"the devil": ..2006 Chávez speech at the UN damning U.S. President George Bush.[81] In the speech Chavez referred to Bush as "the devil," adding that Bush, who had given a speech to the assembly a day earlier, had come to the General Assembly to "share his nostrums to try to preserve the current pattern of domination, exploitation and pillage of the peoples of the world."[82][83] Although it was widely condemned by U.S. politicians and media [84][85] [86], the speech was received with "wild applause" in the Assembly. [87] [88]
Foreign policy of Hugo Chávez Chávez's foreign policy conduct and anti-Bush rhetoric has occasionally reached the level of personal attacks. Chávez once referred to U.S. President George W. Bush as a pendejo ("dumbass"), and constantly refers to him as Míster Danger. In a later speech, he made personal remarks regarding Condoleezza Rice, referring to her as a "complete illiterate" when it comes to comprehending Latin America.[133][134][135

Heating Oil for USA: After Hurricane Katrina battered the United States’ Gulf Coast in late 2005, the Chávez administration was the first foreign government to offer aid to the devastated regions. The Bush administration opted to refuse this aid. Later during the winter of 2005, various officials in the Northeastern United States signed an agreement with Venezuela to provide discounted heating oil to low income families.

9/11: In a 2006 letter to the United States Congress, Chávez called on the U.S. Congress to "demand that the government of President Bush explain the self-inflicted attack on the World Trade Center and its victims, the supposed aircraft that crashed into the Pentagon and the links between the bin Laden family and the Bush family."[7]

William Brownfield, USA ambassador to Venezuela,

TRADE -Economy
Venezuela continues to be highly dependent on the petroleum sector, accounting for roughly one-third of GDP, around 80% of export earnings, and almost half of government operating revenues.
Venezuela facts by
GDP - real growth rate:
9.3% (2005 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$6,400 (2005 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 4%
industry: 41.9%
services: 54.1% (2005 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 13%
industry: 23%
services: 64% (1997 est.)
Unemployment rate:
12.2% (2005 est.)
Population below poverty line:
47% (1998 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 0.8%
highest 10%: 36.5% (1998)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
16% (2005 est.)

Government revenue also has been bolstered by increased tax collection, which has surpassed its 2005 collection goal by almost 50%. Tax revenue is the primary source of non-oil revenue, which accounts for 53% of the 2006 budget. A disastrous two-month national oil strike, from December 2002 to February 2003, temporarily halted economic activity. The economy remained in depression in 2003, declining by 9.2% after an 8.9% fall in 2002. Output recovered strongly in 2004-2005, aided by high oil prices and strong consumption growth. Venezuela continues to be an important source of crude oil for the US market. Both inflation and unemployment remain fundamental problems.

Agriculture - products:
corn, sorghum, sugarcane, rice, bananas, vegetables, coffee; beef, pork, milk, eggs; fish
petroleum, construction materials, food processing, textiles; iron ore mining, steel, aluminum; motor vehicle assembly
Exports - commodities:

petroleum, bauxite and aluminum, steel, chemicals, agricultural products, basic manufactures
Exports - partners:
US 51.2%, Netherlands Antilles 7.3%, Canada 2.4% (2005) Imports:
$24.63 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)
Imports - commodities:
raw materials, machinery and equipment, transport equipment, construction materials
Imports - partners:
US 31.6%, Colombia 11%, Brazil 9.1%, Mexico 6.9% (2005)

Citgo Petroleum Corporation  is controlled by the Venezuelan government

Citgo refers to its logo as the "trimark." A large, double-faced sign featuring this logo overlooks Fenway Park in Boston,  Massachusetts from Kenmore Square and has become a landmark, partly because of its appearance in the background in televised baseball games. The current 60-foot by 60-foot incarnation, unveiled in March 2005 after a six-month restoration project, features thousands of light-emitting diodes.

Venezuelan Oil - production:
3.081 million bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - consumption:
530,000 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Oil - exports:
2.1 million bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil - imports:
NA bbl/day
Oil - proved reserves:
75.59 billion bbl (2005 est.)
Natural gas - production:
29.7 billion cu m (2003 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
29.7 billion cu m (2003 est.)
September 2006, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez made a vitriolic anti-bush speech at the U.N. calling President Bush "the devil". Since then a Boston city councilor, Jerry McDermott (Allston-Brighton), has called for the sign to be dismantled, due to Citgo's ownership by the Venezuelan government.
Business Etiquette
Business: English is becoming more widely spoken in business circles, particularly at executive level. Nevertheless, Spanish is essential for most business discussions. Appointments are necessary and a business visitor should be punctual.  Office hours: Mon-Fri 0800-1800 with a long midday break.

Fashion is very important to Venezuelan women. Women should pack their best business clothes and one cocktail dress. Dress for men is conservative – dark business suits of tropical weight wool

The older generation wants to get to know you personally first, rather than your company or firm while the younger generation  will typically want to relate more to your business dealings or company, rather than to you personally. Avoid dominating the conversation. Venezuelans like to be in control.

It is common to exchange visiting cards. Have business cards printed in English on one side and Spanish on the other. Be sure your position is clearly indicated and present your card immediately following an introduction. Titles are important and should be included on business cards. Address a person directly by using his or her title only.

When dining, wait until everyone is served before beginning to eat. Unlike lunch, dinner is for socializing, not for business.To indicate you have finished eating, place your utensils in parallel and diagonally across your plate

Nepotism an accepted practice and is considered a good thing, since it implies that employing people one knows and trusts is of primary importance


International Disputes  
Caribbean: Dominica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines  have asserted to the UN that Venezuela's claim to an extensive Exclusive Economic Zone of up to 200 nautical miles (370 km) from Isla Aves is illegal.
lying to the west of the Leeward Islands chain at 15°40′18″N, 63°36′59″W. It is 375 meters in length and never more than 50 meters in width, and rises 4 m above the sea on a calm day. It is sometimes completely submerged during hurricanes.

The claim creates a Venezuelan EEZ/continental shelf extending over a large portion of the Caribbean Sea. CARICOM has cited the critical importance of the UN Law of the Sea Convention 1982, as the universal instrument representing the codification of international law of the sea. Heads of Government declared their support for the maritime integrity of the affected Member States of the Community, including relevant maritime areas and called on all states to respect the rules and principles contained in the Convention. Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines protest Venezuela's claim that Aves Island sustains human habitation and other states' recognition of it. In 1950, a Venezuelan Navy fleet consisting of 2 patrol boats and 1 transport boat reached the island and a group of soldiers effectively took control of the island. Twenty-eight years later in 1978, the Venezuelan Navy set up a Scientific Naval Base named "Simón Bolívar", which was permanently inhabited by a group of scientists and military personnel. The Venezuelan military in 2004 expanded the Naval base which was raised on stilts above the water.

Guyana Border: Venezuela claims all of the area west of the Essequibo River in Guyana, preventing any discussion of a maritime boundary; In 1899 an arbitration panel awarded most of the disputed area to British Guyana but in 1951Guyana_border.jpg Venezuela denounced the injustice of the decision. The Venezuela government called for "equitable rectification."  Venezuela in pressing its claims has used military occupation and supporting calls for secession. The Politics of South American Boundaries - by Carlos A. Parodi
 Guyana has expressed its intention to join Barbados in asserting claims before the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that Trinidad and Tobago's maritime boundary with Venezuela extends into their waters. Guyana is a full member of Caricom.
Meanwhile all official maps by the Government of Venezuela now feature this section long considered part of Guyana by most other nations.
The Trail of Diplomacy - A Documentary History of the Guyana-Venezuela Border Issue by Dr.Odeen Ishmael at
Guayana Esequiba a term only used by Venezuela to describe this territory. On some maps, the western Essequibo region is called the "Zone of Reclamation"
News from Guyana Embassy in Venezuela at

Columbia: dispute with Colombia over Los Monjes islands and maritime boundary near the Gulf of Venezuela.[Sometimes referred to as the Gulf of Maracaibo]
The territorial dispute centered on control over the entrance to the Golfo de Venezuela. The key to establishing this control was ownership of the Islas Los Monjes, a chain of three tiny islands lying at the gulf's northern mouth. At stake in the dispute was the control over a substantial amount of maritime territory in the Caribbean that extended into the gulf, an area popularly referred to by Colombians as the Golfo de Coquibacoa. By gaining recognition of its claim to the islands, which were said to be all but submerged at high tide, Colombia could expand national territory into the Caribbean by declaring the extension of its 200-nautical-mile Exclusive Economic Zone around the islands. It would also be able to claim a portion of the waters of the gulf--located next to Venezuela's oil-rich Lago de Maracaibo--which, according to estimates of possible reserves, might contain as much as 10 billion barrels of oil.

Under an 1842 boundary agreement known as the Pombo-Romero Treaty, Venezuela had ceded its claim to the Guajira Peninsula. Conflicting boundary claims between the two nations remained, however, and the issue became more complex. In 1891 King Alfonso XII of Spain, who had been asked to arbitrate, awarded some portions of the disputed territory to Colombia and others to Venezuela. The Spanish arbitration did not, however, delineate the actual boundaries along the entirety of the shared frontier. The 1941 Treaty on Border Demarcation and Navigation of Common Rivers (also known as the Santos-Lopez Contreras Treaty) presumably settled the dispute by delineating with geographic precision the boundaries along the length of the land border. As a result, most of the Guajira Peninsula remained under Colombian control, but uncertainty continued regarding the extension of the maritime boundary into the gulf.

Following the reestablishment of relative domestic peace in Colombia during the 1960s, the dispute over the islands again became a national issue. Several unsuccessful rounds of negotiations were conducted during the 1970s and 1980s. In August 1987, Colombian warships (including the missile frigate Caldas) entered disputed waters at the mouth of the gulf, Colombian Mirage fighters reportedly conducted overflights of the area, and Venezuelan F-16 fighters were moved to a nearby air base. Open hostilities appeared imminent. Even after the withdrawal of the Colombian vessels by order of President Virgilio Barco Vargas, the armed forces of both nations remained on alert in the border area. The Venezuelan government maintained that the vessels' presence in the gulf for three full days represented an act of "intentional provocation" and sent a "strongly worded" formal protest to the Colombian president.

February 1, 2005: Venezuela accused Colombian of invading Venezuelan territory. Colombia accused Venezuela of harboring FARC terrorists. The President of Cuba, Fidel Castro, intervened in the crisis and talked to Chavez and Uribe.  more at

Illicit drugs: small-scale illicit producer of opium and coca for the processing of opiates and coca derivatives; however, large quantities of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana transit the country from Colombia bound for US and Europe; significant narcotics-related money-laundering activity, especially along the border with Colombia and on Margarita Island; active eradication program primarily targeting opium; increasing signs of drug-related activities by Colombian insurgents on border


Brazil - Venezuela
Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro samba school Vila Isabel  was sponsored by Venezuela to help promote Latin American integration. The mood was contagious as the school which has not done well in years won the hotly contested top prize of Rio Carnaval 2006.

Vila Isabel,one of Rio de Janeiro’s most venerable Carnival organizations, honoured Latin America’s mixture of peoples and cultures in a song called “I am mad about you, America – Vila sings the Latinity”, on February 26 2006. Brazilian media said that the celebration led Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s president that has a strong campaign for integration in the region, to spend $1 million to help the school.

The parade's theme praised Latin American unity, with a special honoring of Venezuelan independence hero, Simon Bolivar, Mr Chavez’s favourite personality in Latin America’s history.
Natural Disasters
Venezuela is an earthquake-prone country and is occasionally subject to torrential rains, which can cause major disasters such as the one in Vargas State in 1999.  Travelers who intend to rent or purchase long-term housing in Venezuela should exercise care to choose structures designed for earthquake resistance.  Such individuals may wish to seek professional assistance from an architect or civil/structural engineer, as does the Embassy, when renting or purchasing a house or apartment in Venezuela. 

For further information on seismic activity, you may wish to visit: infoservice/Quakeline_
Database/default.asp or

Main Ports

The principal shipping lines operating to Venezuela are: from the USA: Venezuelan Line; from European ports: French Line, Hamburg Süd, Hapag Lloyd, Polish Ocean Lines and the Spanish ships, ‘Cabo San Juan’ and ‘Cabo San Roque’. Cruise ships often make Caracas a port of call.

La Plaza Las Tres Gracias, before Plaza de Bellas Artes, dedicated in 1946. The work represents the goddesses Thalia, Eufrosina and Aglaia. The sculpture was done was done in Florence by Pietro Cecarelli from 1910 to 1920 with Carrara marble
Venezuela was a prominent founding member of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the current president, Hugo Chávez, has played a leading role in the revival of the organisation’s fortunes since the late 1990s
"I feel I have met a brother and trench mate after meeting Chávez."
-Iran President Ahmadinejad on Chávez
"We have the same political vision."
Chavez on Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.
"I am only a soldier in this battle. Fidel is our president. If we had to name a president of the world with enough powers to set it right, it would be Fidel. I believe in one decade he could set the world right."
-Chávez on Fidel Castro

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