VIO News Blog

March 3, 2009

Venezuelan Government Steps up Rice Plant Inspections

Bloomberg reports that the Venezuelan government is stepping up inspections of privately-owned rice processing plants that are accused of failing to abide by price controls and not producing at full capacity. Reporting from the Arroz Mary processing plant, Business Week quotes army Colonel Carlos Osorio saying, “We aren’t expropriating” the plant or confiscating its rice, instead the government is ensuring that companies distribute the necessary amounts of rice.

The AP reports that PDVSA, Venezuela’s state oil company, announced on Monday that it will begin to settle its outstanding debts with around 6,000 contractors and suppliers, after a “review and analysis of debt.” Rafael Ramirez, president of PDVSA, stated that due to the drop in oil prices, the company will be “reviewing five-year contracts because the prices [that PDVSA pays contractors] can’t remain the same and that should be understood.”

Finally, on Monday, Venezuelan authorities found the wreckage of a small plane in the Andes which had disappeared over the weekend. Unfortunately, none of the 7 passengers survived the accident.

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