The New York Times Criticizes Chavez’s Nationalization Plan

The “unrestrained career” of the Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez, by nationalizing companies, shows that he is in a pinch and that he is trying to avoid a defeat in the regional municipal elections of November, according to the American newspaper The New York Times.

In an editorial, the New York newspaper signaled that it is difficult to know if Chavez shall reach the political effect that he seeks with the nationalization of business sectors such as the steel industry, the cement industry, and electricity, and telecommunications among others. He must take into account that his popularity has fallen constantly since December when the voters rejected his constitutional reform.

If his plan fails, Chavez shall have little: inexpensive milk and cement in order to obtain more support among the poor, says the newspaper in reference to the acquisition by the Venezuelan government of Lacteos Los Andes and the nationalization of the cement industry.

What is sure, states the New York Times, is that the Venezuelan economy “shall suffer” from Chavez’ plans since his “partners in crime” have demonstrated that they don’t have the capacity or the honesty to administer the nationalized businesses.

His poor management has generated a fall in the production of the state owned Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA) and the nationalizations spooked the “very necessary” investments from the private sector.

The newspaper signals that the high price of food at “limitless” World levels and public expense has elevated annual inflation within 20%, “while price controls provoke the inflation of basic elements”.

The judgment of the New York newspaper is that the nationalizations of Chavez are an attempt to control “all the political and economical life” of Venezuela, while proportioning more space for corruption and protectionism.

The newspaper affirms that the Venezuelan voters “have already demonstrated that they realize these manipulations” in the referendum of December which in the elections of November they shall have another opportunity to pronounce their favoritism for democracy.

Defeat in the ballot box of the municipal and regional leaders, the majority close to Chavez, shall send a “clear message that Venezuelans are truly fed up” of the “incompetent and authoritarian” management by its president, concludes the article.

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