Despite serious economic difficulties brought about by the United States imposed blockade and internal political destabilisation program, Venezuela continues to make some progress in creating a better life for its citizens. One of the key concerns is housing, and what is being achieved in this country puts countries to shame. Visitors note that there are no homeless people visible.
Government policy is that everyone must have somewhere to live. The challenges are to lift the quality and affordability of housing. While other nations talk and tinker at the edges, Venezuela is committed to building 500,000 new social dwellings in 2020 alone. Note that this is government owned housing. This article from Telesur (27 December 2019), provides a more detailed picture.
A second article is an interview with the Chinese new agency Xinhua (26 December 2019) of Venezuelan economist Jesus Faria, about Venezuela achieving economic growth despite the blockade , currency and other attacks being constantly waged against it.
The new goal of the social housing program is to deliver at least 500,000 new dwellings in 2020.
Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro announced [in December] that the Venezuelan Great Housing Mission (GMVV) achieved its 2019 goal by completing the delivery of 3 million dwellings to the Bolivarian people as planned.
“Despite the Imperialist economic, trade and financial blockade, which robbed us of so many resources in 2019, the construction industry did not stop,” Maduro said at an event in the state of La Guaira, where he handed over the keys of the dwelling number 3 million to a local family.
The housing program, which seeks to deliver at least 500,000 new dwellings in 2020, has a new goal to achieve: to deliver 5 million dwellings by 2025.
The Bolivarian president also mentioned that community-led dwelling construction has become the new method to increase the supply of residences.
Following our original proposal with a greater decision, we will deliver land to the people so that they can get involved in the construction of houses,” Maduro said and explained that 70 percent of the residences will be built through this community-based construction method.
The Venezuelan president also announced that the banking system will increase the amount of loans for purchasing dwellings, constructing residences or making house improvements.
The Venezuelan Great Housing Mission was created in 2011 by the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and its mission is to reduce the country’s housing deficit.
Venezuela’s economy will grow in 2020 despite US blockade
The also former Minister of Foreign Trade and International Investment of Venezuela (2016-2017) stated that “there is a perceived activation of trade and some productive activities as well as a stabilization of the oil activity that stopped falling and there are signs of a recovery” although without an “economic boom.”
“We think the year 2020 is going to be better economically and that is going to be very important for us. One of the fundamental lines of action is to recover the economy in order to give the people well-being,” he said.
Faria states that another important factor for the reactivation is that “private economic actors have begun to use their foreign exchange resources to carry out their production and trade activities.”
The economist stressed that another factor that makes these results possible is the guarantee of internal peace “through the activation of the working class and social movements” as a political element with social and economic implications.
This situation, he said, is reflected “especially in basic industries, where measures have allowed partnerships, joint ventures with the national and foreign private sector, in all companies of the Venezuelan State.
Faria highlighted how the Venezuelan government has been able to overcome the limitations and shortcomings that have emerged after two years of intensification of the coercive and unilateral measures imposed by the White House on the South American nation.
“Venezuelan authorities have been able to decipher the blockade and began to evade it, which will allow to progressively recove production, as has happened in recent months,” he added.
Faria said the Venezuelan oil industry began its recovery process, but warned that it is a “tortuous and slow process, greatly affected by the sanctions that prohibit all types of financial and productive commercial links” with the Venezuelan oil industry.
“We are not going to quickly reach the 2 million 100,000 barrels a day that was the national production when the sanctions began, but we will be able to progressively recover production as has actually happened in recent months,” said the expert.
However, despite his perspective, the economist notes that the biggest threats to Venezuela’s economic recovery could be sanctions, as everything points to deepening, as well as the parliamentary elections planned for 2020.
The Venezuelan economy has been sustained for decades by the oil industry, whose activity has suffered severe damage in recent years, with a noticeable decline in the production and export of hydrocarbons since the violent U.S. sanctions.