Venezuelan Daily Brief

Published in association with The DVA Group and The Selinger Group, the Venezuelan Daily Brief provides bi-weekly summaries of key news items affecting bulk commodities and the general business environment in Venezuela.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

September 10, 2015

International Trade


Cargo that has arrived at La Guaira:

  • 30,000 tons of white corn from México
  • 15,000 tons of wheat from Canada
  • 8,000 tons of wheat from New Orleans
More in Spanish: (Bolipuertos,


Cargo that has arrived at Puerto Cabello:

  • 283 tons of tires in 22 containers from Ecuador
  • Over 184 tons of rubber for manufacturing tires, from Guatemala, for Goodyear Venezuela
More in Spanish: (Notitarde;


Border closing can shut down 60% of all exports to Colombia

By closing down the main land crossings on the border to Colombia, bi-national trade has been limited to air and sea routes at a time when Colombia continues to be Venezuela's third largest non-oil export market - and Venezuela's Exporters Association explains that 60% of all exports in 2013 were carried out by land, so the shutdown is estimated to impact in the same proportion. More in Spanish: (El Mundo,



Logistics & Transport


Empty trucks roll back over border

Some of the 103 trucks the Venezuelan regime has allowed to return from Colombia have started to come back, but with no cargo despite pleas by business associations grouped in FEDECÁMARAS to authorities so they will allow a large amount of merchandise from South America, Europe and Asia to pass through. More in Spanish: (Ultimas Noticias,





This Brazilian beef company has a US$ 2 billion stake in Venezuela's future

In June, the president of Venezuela’s congress, Diosdado Cabello, spent four days in Brazil. His first major meeting was with Joesley Batista, the eldest of a billionaire clan of five siblings who control JBS SA, the world’s largest meat packer. On three days, Cabello went to JBS plants. JBS has a US$ 2.1 billion contract and provides almost half the meat and a quarter of the chicken eaten by 28 million Venezuelans. The country accounts for about 10% of JBS’s export revenues, which some analysts have labeled a risky position, given Venezuela’s near default status.  JBS has an arrangement other companies do not. In 2014 it sold US$ 1.2 billion of food to the Venezuelan government and was paid within 90 days, according to documents prepared jointly by the company and the state import monopoly CORPOVEX. By contrast, numerous local and foreign corporations in Venezuela haven’t been able to obtain rationed dollars from the government in years. ECOANALITICA, a Caracas-based consultancy, notes that the Venezuelan government has US$ 28 billion of unpaid invoices to private companies. The JBS deal provides a Brazilian lifeline to Maduro’s government as it endeavors to stock food shelves in advance of elections. Last year, JBS was the biggest donor to Rousseff’s Workers’ Party. The company’s growing donations to Rousseff, as well as her opponents, were cited in a congressional inquiry of BNDES, the Brazilian state development bank, which owns a quarter of the beef maker. (Bloomberg,


Maduro says Venezuela and China to develop gold industry

President Nicolás Maduro says that a special plan had been outlined to turn the gold industry into a new source of income for Venezuela as part of the agreements signed by his government and China; adding that the Minister of Petroleum and Mining and President of state-run oil company Petróleos de Venezuela (Pdvsa), Eulogio Del Pino, will be working along with an ad-hoc team to rearrange the entire gold sector in the country. (El Universal,



Economy & Finance


Venezuela´s Central Bank (BCV) has not paid out dollars that CENCOEX has previously authorized for the private sector over the past two months, according within the BCV. The reason for this is that PDVSA has not sold dollars to the BCV in these two months as it is saving funds to pay US$ 4.6 billion to service its bonds between September and December this year. (Veneconomy,



Politics and International Affairs


The Russian government denies Vladimir Putin and Nicolás Maduro have reached any concrete agreements to lower oil prices, during their recent meeting in Beijing, as Maduro claimed when he returned to Venezuela. Russian Presidency’s spokesman Dmitri Peskov said Tuesday “no specific cooperation or coordination tools were mentioned, nor were any particular steps or concrete promises made.” (Veneconomy,


US Secretary of State Kerry calls Venezuela counterpart on border crisis, López case; Rodríguez version clarified

US Secretary of State John Kerry called Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez by phone Tuesday in an attempt to keep the lines of communication open between the countries, according to Roberta Jacobson, the top U.S. diplomat for Latin America. Kerry expressed concern about individuals jailed for political reasons in Venezuela, including prominent opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez, according to Jacobson. Lopez has been jailed for 19 months and a verdict in his case is expected Thursday. Last week, Kerry met with Lopez's wife, Lilian Tintori, in Washington. Kerry also discussed the need to find a quick resolution to Venezuela's two week-old border dispute with Colombia in light of the humanitarian situation. Rodríguez had previously posted to her Twitter account that: "At the request of the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, I received a call against the backdrop of talks to regularize bilateral diplomatic relations... The conversation... was fluent and tense at times. I conveyed frankly the stance of dignity of the Venezuelan government and people". Jacobson clarified: "The Foreign Minister has published several Tweets and that is her perspective." And said: "I will leave specific details to my boss". Jacobson said talks between both countries continue, "with discrepancies", in search of a "pragmatic relationship with Venezuela". (Associated Press,; El Universal,; and more in Spanish: Noticias RCN:


Colombian President Santos says Maduro does not respond to Uruguay's mediation, will not react to "buffoonery"

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos says his Venezuelan counterpart Nicolás Maduro is not taking telephone calls from Uruguayan President Tabaré Vázquez, who has offered to mediate in the border conflict between both Andean nations: "I spoke today to the President of Uruguay, he mentioned that President Maduro has not taken his phone call since last week, just as he did not answer me at the onset of this conflict, when we opened ways for talks". Maduro had said he would accept mediation by Brazil and Argentina. He added, in reference to Maduro's recent comments: "I will not be provoked by buffoonery". Santos went on to say that the Venezuelan revolution was deteriorating because of its own problems, and not due to external elements. "I am not destroying the Bolivarian revolution... The Bolivarian revolution is destroying itself, because of its results, not because of Colombians or the president of Colombia," he said, and added that although he respected the so-called Bolivarian revolution, he did not agree with it. "We do not believe that it is the most appropriate path to satisfy the people's needs," he noted. "We have not taken part in a plot to destroy it (the revolution)," Santos stressed. (El Universal,; and more in Spanish:  Infolatam,


Colombian Foreign Minister met with UN's Ban Ki-moon, Venezuelans will follow suit

Colombian Foreign Minister María Angela Holguín has met in New York with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon over the border crisis with Colombia. She reported the Secretary general "understood the situation there perfectly. He had an excellent disposition and will surely now speak to Venezuela." Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro announced his Foreign Minister, Delcy Rodríguez, is now on her way to New York to meet with Ban Ki-moon. More in Spanish: (El Nacional;; AVN;


UN: 20,000 Colombians have been expelled or have left Venezuela

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reports that 1,467 Colombians have been expelled from Venezuela and 18,619 have left the country of their own accord due to the border crisis that arose 20 days ago. The figures, included in the latest OCHA report, are current as of Sept. 7. OCHA emphasizes that although no new expulsions have been registered in Colombia’s Norte de Santander province since Aug. 26, “in other provinces the figure continues to climb.” (Latin American Herald Tribune,; El Universal,


Garzón recommends bringing Venezuela-Colombia border conflict to the ICJ

A quick and immediate solution to the immigration conflict between Colombia and Venezuela could be found if the issue is addressed at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) of the United Nations, says Spanish former judge Baltasar Garzón. "Solution should be found through dialogue or international justice," said the judge in Buenos Aires. (El Universal,


Brazilian envoy backs Guyana in border dispute with Venezuela

The Brazilian ambassador to Guyana has expressed support for Georgetown in its century-old dispute with neighboring Venezuela over control of the Essequibo region. “I firmly believe that in the 21st century there is no place for old territorial disputes. Guyana has the right, and I agree that the government has a duty, to seek the development of the country,” Lineu Pupo de Paula said, according to a statement released by the Guyanese government. De Paula made those comments in the presence of Guyanese President David Granger during a function at the ambassador’s residence to mark Brazil’s independence day. (Latin American Herald Tribune,; El Universal,


DATANÁLISIS: People's dissatisfaction towards the government rises

Venezuelan economist and director of polling firm DATANÁLIS, Luis Vicente León, says recent economic measures implemented in Venezuela "have increased people's dissatisfaction towards the Venezuelan government." He adds that citizens .hold the government accountable when crisis is perceived. In this case, León pointed out that for some people "Maduro is to blame for the crisis, while for other people, he is not responsible for it, but he is unable to solve the problems. For this reason, given the clear decline in his popularity, (Maduro) prefers to have the public attention focused on the border." (El Universal,


73% of the polled population believes Chávez erred when he appointed Nicolás Maduro as his successor, according to the most recent poll by DATINCORP. Maduro fails at every issue involving his administration. Half those polled (50%) favor a referendum to revoke his mandate. (Veneconomy,



The following brief is a synthesis of the news as reported by a variety of media sources. As such, the views and opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of Duarte Vivas & Asociados and The Selinger Group.

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