A Venezuelan Oil Rig
On The Surface
The whole world has been shaken by the plummet in oil prices. Countries whose economies are wholly dependent on oil are facing tough times, and it appears that Venezuela has been hardest hit. Under communist leader Hugo Chavez, petroleum became the sole force driving the Venezuelan economy, and this has only set up Venezuela for failure in this global market. This article will focus on the effects the recent oil collapse has had on Venezuela, and its impacts on future stability.
Relations Under Pressure
Venezuela has often been open-handed in Latin American affairs. Caracas has been famous for doling out millions of dollars worth of oil to neighboring countries. This process of buying friendship will be tested in the months to come. Venezuela’s Merry Crude oil, some of the purest in the world, is no longer worth as much as it once was and therefore no longer wields the same amount of bargaining clout. Maduro will be forced to find other forms of making alliances, but as of now Raul Castro has already shown signs of distancing himself from Venezuela by rejecting their pleas for aid.
Questioning Maduro’s Leadership Capability
Venezuelan McDonald locations can no longer supply their customers with the trademark golden fries. These issues of scarcity are not only prevalent in the fast food industry, but also in other products such as diapers and food. As scarcity continues to be an issue in Venezuela, the blame will shift to the leader in power. Maduro is now being bombarded by both his own people, and officials in the country’s legislature. Maduro is finally being tested, but if public opinion remains unfavorable, he may not last. Another clear indicator of Maduro’s lack of leadership capability is evident in his last diplomatic blunder. Maduro just recently returned from a several day trip to various oil producing nations across the world urging them to cut back production. Ultimately, his pleas fell on deaf ears and Maduro is seen by the Venezuelans as ineffective.
Venezuela’s economy is absolutely dependent on oil. If no substantive change comes into fruition, Maduro’s leadership and the communist party will be in jeopardy.