Caracas, 8th December 2013 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro passed a series of economic decrees to protect job stability and savings on Friday.
The measures are designed to maintain stability after a year of economic troubles, which include annual inflation of 54%, shortages in some basic food products, and a tenfold gap between the official and black market dollar price.
The government says this situation is due to an “economic war” being waged by business sectors aligned with the conservative opposition, while the opposition blames government policies and “mismanagement”.
One of the measures taken by Maduro was to make it illegal to fire salaried workers during 2014. He said he wanted to reduce unemployment from around 7% currently to 4%.
“I call on the working class for work, for productivity, for discipline; to organise to work better, to produce more…a country can only move forward and advance towards the future with the value of labour,” Maduro said.
The Venezuelan president also passed a series of measures to encourage citizens to save rather than trying to convert their savings into goods to protect their value from inflation.
Citizens will get higher interest rates on savings accounts, and a plan will be launched next week to encourage savings accounts for children.
Another decree allows Venezuelans to buy public debt, giving them a stake in the stability of the bolivar currency.
The government has expressed its hope that between all economic measures taken recently, 2014 will be a year of economic growth, stability, and further poverty reduction.