Sunday, July 20, 2008

Wearing a Suit for the Occasion

"July 18 (Bloomberg) -- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez wore a suit for the occasion, and, grinning at about 300 business leaders he usually calls ``oligarchs,'' asked for help relieving a drought in investment.

``Those of you who have money abroad, bring some home,'' he implored company executives gathered June 11 at the former Caracas Hilton, a hotel taken over by the government last year. ``Let's ally ourselves, let's elevate production as much as we can,'' he said to scattered applause.

After squeezing the private sector for almost a decade with nationalizations and foreign exchange controls, Chavez is holding out the lure of lower taxes and $1 billion of loans to spark growth and combat spiraling inflation that only ramped up production can solve."

By Daniel Cancel and Matthew Walter

I've done that. Gone asking for that which I pushed away. Gone asking for that which I pushed away because I believed it was the right thing to do... It must have sucked.

"Foreign direct investment has dropped 90 percent since 1997, the year before Chavez was elected, to $646 million last year from a record $6.2 billion, according to the Central Bank.

That puts Venezuela, a country of about 28 million people and a gross domestic product of $182 billion, on par with Guatemala, a nation without any oil and an economy less than a quarter the size."

Thanks Dave for the article!

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