Venezuela's National Assembly approved a 79 million dollars credit for the import of toilet paper, toothpaste and soap. The measure comes after Venezuela hit the news with its dire toilet paper shortage.
Economists are saying that the shortage, which affects not just toilet paper but other basic goods, is the result of price controls imposed by the country's populist government. Under late leader charismatic president Hugo Chavez, chronic shortages have in fact plagued the country since 2003.
It comes thus comes as no surprise then that the toilet paper shortage has ignited partisan tensions in Venezuela. In April, Chavez's chosen successor President Nicolas Maduro, narrowly defeated challenger Henrique Capriles. Scores of people died in the bitter election riots that followed.
The move to approve the shipment of 39 million toilet paper rolls to Venezuela probably won't solve any of the deeper issues that caused the shortage in the first place.
The resulting scarcity forces up inflation defeating the entire purpose of price controls in the first place said the organization Consensus Economics. But for now, at least locals can rest easy while they're on the pot.
Following his first trip overseas to Mercosur fellow members, Uruguay, Argentina and Brazil, President Maduro pledged he had ensured 750.000 tons of food to be delivered in coming months to help cope with the empty shelves of supermarkets and stores.