After slamming international banks for more than a decade, the Venezuelan government met with investment bankers to try to change the perception of risk associated to the country and prepare the scenario for upcoming economic measures.
A blackout cut electricity in various parts of Venezuela on Friday and twice interrupted the live television broadcast of a speech by President Nicolas Maduro, who said authorities were seeking more information about the outage.
The US House of Representatives passed legislation on Wednesday, to impose sanctions on Venezuelans responsible for human rights abuses during anti-government protests, despite Obama administration worries that they could threaten talks seeking to ease the unrest.
As airlines cut service to Caracas and Venezuela struggles with a continuing debt crisis, the government of President Nicolás Maduro revealed that it would raise all international airline ticket prices by 350%. The measure should allow to pay part of the 4 billion dollars owed to foreign airlines, according to the government.
President Nicolás Maduro said the World Cup is to blame for international airlines’ decision to cut flights to Venezuela and denied that the move had anything to do with his government's refusal to allow them to repatriate proceeds from ticket sales inside the country.
Mediators from Unasur (Union of South American Nations) urged Venezuela's government and opposition back to the negotiating table after failing to revive talks to stem months of protests in the polarized nation.
Uruguay Foreign Affairs minister Luis Almagro said that the political situation in Venezuela makes it quite improbable that the three-times postponed and since delayed Mercosur summit can effectively take place in Caracas sometime in the next two months.
Venezuela’s three-month protest movement has dwindled to a hard core of a few hundred violent troublemakers and the unrest should be over by July, when schools and universities break up for the summer holidays, a top security official said.
Venezuela said it had freed most of the 243 youth activists arrested in raids last week on street camps set up to protest against President Nicolas Maduro's government. Although the demolition of four camps in Caracas was hoped would discourage the three-month protest movement, activists vowed the measure had only strengthened their resolve to demonstrate.
At the end of May Mercosur will be ready to exchange tariff-reduction proposals with the European Union, announced Brazilian Industry minister Mauro Borges who also anticipated the trade block would be holding a preparatory meeting next week in Caracas, Venezuela.