Poverty in Venezuela Decreased by 22.6% over Past Decade

The
president of Venezuela's National Statistics Institute (INE), Elias Eljuri, announced
on Friday that poverty in Venezuela has been reduced by 22.6% since President
Hugo Chavez took office.

By James Suggett - Venezuelanalysis.com
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Mérida, August 7th 2009 (Venezuelanalysis.com) -- The
president of Venezuela's National Statistics Institute (INE), Elias Eljuri, announced
on Friday that poverty in Venezuela has been reduced by 22.6% since President
Hugo Chavez took office.

"Poverty has been dropping in an important manner over the
last ten years, from 49% in 1998 to 26.4% in 2009," said Eljuri, citing the
INE's national survey of 40,000 homes.

The INE also released inflation statistics for the month of
July, showing 2.1% inflation, slightly higher than the previous month. Accumulated
inflation so far this year is 13.1%, significantly lower than the 17.3%
accumulated inflation during the first seven months of 2008.

Inflation in the prices of food, transportation, and
education were slightly higher than the monthly average in July, while the
prices of housing, health care, and communications were slightly lower.

The unemployment rate in June was 7.8%, according to the
INE's most recent report. This is slightly higher than the unemployment rate in
June of last year, which was 7.6%. The unemployment rate in Venezuela when
Chavez took office ten years ago was 15%.