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Venezuela Business Guide


Geography


Location:
Northern South America, bordering the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, between Colombia and Guyana


Geographic coordinates:
8 00 N, 66 00 W


Map references:
South America


Area:
total:912,050 sq kmcountry comparison to the world: 33
land:882,050 sq km
water:30,000 sq km


Area - comparative:
Area comparison map: '>


Land boundaries:
total:4,993 km
border countries:Brazil 2,200 km, Colombia 2,050 km, Guyana 743 km


Coastline:
2,800 km


Maritime claims:
territorial sea:12 nm
contiguous zone:15 nm
exclusive economic zone:200 nm
continental shelf:200 m depth or to the depth of exploitation


Climate:
tropical; hot, humid; more moderate in highlands


    Terrain:
Andes Mountains and Maracaibo Lowlands in northwest; central plains (llanos); Guiana Highlands in southeast


Elevation extremes:
lowest point:Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point:Pico Bolivar 5,007 m


Natural resources:
petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, gold, bauxite, other minerals, hydropower, diamonds


Land use:
arable land:2.85%
permanent crops:0.71%
other:96.44% (2011)


Irrigated land:
10,550 sq km (2008)


Total renewable water resources:
1,233 cu km (2011)


Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
1,233 cu km (2011)

Natural hazards:
subject to floods, rockslides, mudslides; periodic droughts


Environment - current issues:
sewage pollution of Lago de Valencia; oil and urban pollution of Lago de Maracaibo; deforestation; soil degradation; urban and industrial pollution, especially along the Caribbean coast; threat to the rainforest ecosystem from irresponsible mining operations


Environment - international agreements:
party to:Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
signed but not ratified::none of the selected agreements


Geography - note:
on major sea and air routes linking North and South America; Angel Falls in the Guiana Highlands is the world's highest waterfall



People and Society


Nationality:
noun: Venezuelan(s)
adjective:Venezuelan


Ethnic groups:
Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Arab, German, African, indigenous people


Languages:
Spanish (official), numerous indigenous dialects


Religions:
nominally Roman Catholic 96%, Protestant 2%, other 2%


Demographic profile:
Social investment in Venezuela during the CHAVEZ administration reduced poverty from nearly 50 % in 1999 to about 27 % in 2011, increased school enrollment, substantially decreased infant and child mortality, and improved access to potable water and sanitation through social investment. 'Missions' dedicated to education, nutrition, healthcare, and sanitation were funded through petroleum revenues. The sustainability of this progress remains questionable, however, as the continuation of these social programs depends on the prosperity of Venezuela's oil industry. In the long-term, education and health care spending may increase economic growth and reduce income inequality, but rising costs and the staffing of new health care jobs with foreigners are slowing development.


Population:
28,868,486 (July 2014 est.)country comparison to the world: 46


Age structure:
0-14 years:28.2% (male 4,143,840/female 3,985,489)
15-24 years:18.8% (male 2,723,856/female 2,697,672)
25-54 years:39.6% (male 5,614,922/female 5,818,903)
55-64 years:7.5% (male 1,030,898/female 1,137,894)
65 years and over:5.8% (male 755,183/female 959,829) (2014 est.)


Dependency ratios:
total dependency ratio:52.9 %
youth dependency ratio:43.2 %
elderly dependency ratio:9.8 %
potential support ratio:10.2 (2014 est.)


Median age:
total:26.9 years
male:26.1 years
female:27.6 years (2014 est.)


Population growth rate:
1.42% (2014 est.)country comparison to the world: 86


Birth rate:
19.42 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)country comparison to the world: 90


Death rate:
5.27 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.)country comparison to the world: 181


Net migration rate:
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2014 est.)country comparison to the world: 83


Urbanization:
urban population:93.5% of total population (2011)
rate of urbanization:1.7% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)


Major urban areas - population:
CARACAS (capital) 3.242 million; Maracaibo 2.31 million; Valencia 1.866 million; Barquisimeto 1.245 million; Maracay 1.115 million; Ciudad Guayana 799,000 (2011)


Sex ratio:
at birth:1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years:1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years:1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years:0.97 male(s)/female
55-64 years:0.98 male(s)/female
65 years and over:0.79 male(s)/female
total population:0.98 male(s)/female (2014 est.)


Maternal mortality rate:
92 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)


    Infant mortality rate:
total:19.33 deaths/1,000 live birthscountry comparison to the world: 93
male:22.73 deaths/1,000 live births
female:15.75 deaths/1,000 live births (2014 est.)


Life expectancy at birth:
total population:74.39 yearscountry comparison to the world: 111
male:71.26 years
female:77.67 years (2014 est.)


Total fertility rate:
2.35 children born/woman (2014 est.)country comparison to the world: 90


Health expenditures:
5.2% of GDP (2011)


Physicians density:
1.94 physicians/1,000 population (2001)


Hospital bed density:
0.9 beds/1,000 population (2011)


Drinking water source:
improved:
urban: 94.3% of population
rural: 75.3% of population
total: 92.9% of population
unimproved:
urban: 5.7% of population
rural: 24.7% of population
total: 7.1% of population (2007 est.)


Sanitation facility access:
improved:
urban: 93.6% of population
rural: 56.9% of population
total: 90.9% of population
unimproved:
urban: 6.4% of population
rural: 43.1% of population
total: 9.1% of population (2007 est.)


HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.6% (2012 est.)country comparison to the world: 65


HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
107,900 (2012 est.)country comparison to the world: 43


HIV/AIDS - deaths:
3,800 (2012 est.)country comparison to the world: 46


Major infectious diseases:


Obesity - adult prevalence rate:
30.3% (2008)country comparison to the world: 26


Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
2.9% (2009)country comparison to the world: 114


Education expenditures:
6.9% of GDP (2009)country comparison to the world: 22

Literacy:
definition:age 15 and over can read and write
total population:95.5%
male:95.7%
female:95.4% (2009 est.)


School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total:14 years
13 years
15 years (2008)


Child labor - children ages 5-14:



Unemployment, youth ages 15-24:
total:17.1%country comparison to the world: 75
male:14.3%
female:22.6% (2012)


Government


Country name:
conventional long form: Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
conventional short form:Venezuela
local long form:Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela
local short form:Venezuela


Government type:
federal republic


Capital:
name:Caracas
geographic coordinates:10 29 N, 66 52 W
time difference:UTC-4.5 (a half hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)


Administrative divisions:
23 states (estados, singular - estado), 1 capital district* (distrito capital), and 1 federal dependency** (dependencia federal); Amazonas, Anzoategui, Apure, Aragua, Barinas, Bolivar, Carabobo, Cojedes, Delta Amacuro, Dependencias Federales (Federal Dependencies)**, Distrito Capital (Capital District)*, Falcon, Guarico, Lara, Merida, Miranda, Monagas, Nueva Esparta, Portuguesa, Sucre, Tachira, Trujillo, Vargas, Yaracuy, Zulia


Independence:
5 July 1811 (from Spain)


National holiday:
Independence Day, 5 July (1811)


Constitution:
many previous; latest adopted 15 December 1999, effective 30 December 1999; amended 2009 (2013)


Legal system:
civil law system based on the Spanish civil code


International law organization participation:
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; state party to the ICCT


Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal


Executive branch:
chief of state:President Nicolas MADURO Moros (since 19 April 2013); Executive Vice President Jorge Alberto ARREAZA Montserrat (since 19 April 2013); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government; former Executive Vice President Nicolas MADURO Moros assumed presidential responsibilities after the death of President Hugo CHAVEZ Frias on 5 March 2013 and became Acting President while preparations for elections took place. He won a national election on 14 April 2013 and started a six-year term
head of government:President Nicolas MADURO Moros (since 19 April 2013); Executive Vice President Jorge Alberto ARREAZA Montserrat (since 19 April 2013)
cabinet:Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections:president elected by popular vote for a six-year term (eligible for unlimited reelection); election last held on 14 April 2013; note - this was a special election held following the death of President Hugo CHAVEZ Frias on 5 March 2013; the next scheduled election after this is expected to be held in late 2018 or early 2019 pending official convocation by the country's electoral body)
note:in 1999, a National Constituent Assembly drafted a new constitution that increased the presidential term to six years; an election was subsequently held on 30 July 2000 under the terms of this constitution; in 2009, a national referendum approved the elimination of term limits on all elected officials, including the presidency
election results:Nicolas MADURO Moros elected president; percent of vote - Nicolas MADURO Moros 50.61%, Henrique CAPRILES Radonski 49.12%, other 0.24%


Legislative branch:
unicameral National Assembly or Asamblea Nacional (165 seats; members elected by popular vote on a proportional basis to serve five-year terms; three seats reserved for the indigenous peoples of Venezuela)
elections:last held on 26 September 2010 (next to be held in 2015)
election results:percent of vote by party - pro-government 48.9%, opposition coalition 47.9%, other 3.2%; seats by party - pro-government 98, opposition 65, other 2


Judicial branch:
highest court(s):Supreme Tribunal of Justice (consists of 32 judges organized into six divisions - constitutional, political administrative, electoral, civil appeals, criminal appeals, and social (mainly agrarian and labor issues)
judge selection and term of office:judges proposed by the Committee of Judicial Postulation (an independent body of organizations dealing with legal issues and of the organs of citizen power) and appointed by the National Assembly; judges serve non-renewable 12-year terms
subordinate courts:Superior or Appeals Courts (Tribunales Superiores); District Tribunals (Tribunales de Distrito); Courts of First Instance (Tribunales de Primera Instancia); Parish Courts (Tribunales de Parroquia); Justices of the Peace (Justicia de Paz) Network


    Political parties and leaders:
A New Time or UNT [Omar BARBOZA]
Brave People's Alliance or ABP [Antonio LEDEZMA]
Christian Democrats or COPEI [Roberto ENRIQUEZ]
Coalition of opposition parties -- The Democratic Unity Table or MUD [Ramon Guillermo AVELEDO]
Communist Party of Venezuela or PCV [Oscar FIGUERA]
Democratic Action or AD [Henry RAMOS ALLUP]
Fatherland for All or PPT [Rafael UZCATEGUI]
For Social Democracy or PODEMOS [Ismael GARCIA]
Justice First or PJ [Julio BORGES]
Movement Toward Socialism or MAS [Nicolas SOSA]
Popular Will or VP [Leopoldo LOPEZ]
Progressive Wave or AP [Henri FALCON]
The Radical Cause [Daniel SANTOLO]
United Socialist Party of Venezuela or PSUV [Nicolas MADURO]
Venezuelan Progressive Movement or MPV [Simon CALZADILLA]
Venezuela Project or PV [Henrique SALAS ROMER]


Political pressure groups and leaders:
Bolivarian and Socialist Workers' Union (a ruling party labor union)


International organization participation:
Caricom (observer), CD, CDB, CELAC, FAO, G-15, G-24, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA, LAS (observer), Mercosur, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, OPEC, PCA, Petrocaribe, UN, UNASUR, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO


Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission:Ambassador (vacant)
chancery:1099 30th Street NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone:[1] (202) 342-2214
FAX:[1] (202) 342-6820
consulate(s) general:Boston, Chicago, Houston, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, San Juan (Puerto Rico)


Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission:Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Philip G. LAIDLAW
embassy:Calle F con Calle Suapure, Urbanizacion Colinas de Valle Arriba, Caracas 1080
mailing address:P. O. Box 62291, Caracas 1060-A; APO AA 34037
telephone:[58] (212) 975-6411, 907-8400 (after hours)
FAX:[58] (212) 907-8199


Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of yellow (top), blue, and red with the coat of arms on the hoist side of the yellow band and an arc of eight white five-pointed stars centered in the blue band; the flag retains the three equal horizontal bands and three main colors of the banner of Gran Colombia, the South American republic that broke up in 1830; yellow is interpreted as standing for the riches of the land, blue for the courage of its people, and red for the blood shed in attaining independence; the seven stars on the original flag represented the seven provinces in Venezuela that united in the war of independence; in 2006, then President Hugo CHAVEZ ordered an eighth star added to the star arc - a decision that sparked much controversy - to conform with the flag proclaimed by Simon Bolivar in 1827 and to represent the province of Guayana


National symbol(s):
troupial (bird)


National anthem:
name:'Gloria al bravo pueblo' (Glory to the Brave People)

lyrics/music:Vicente SALIAS/Juan Jose LANDAETA
note:adopted 1881; the lyrics were written in 1810, the music some years later; both SALIAS and LANDAETA were executed in 1814 during Venezuela's struggle for independence


Economy


Economy - overview:
Venezuela remains highly dependent on oil revenues, which account for roughly 96% of export earnings, about 45% of budget revenues, and around 12% of GDP. Fueled by high oil prices, pre-election government spending helped spur GDP growth in 2012 to 5.6%. Government spending, minimum wage hikes, and improved access to domestic credit created an increase in consumption which combined with supply problems to cause higher inflation - roughly 20% in 2012 and rising to more than 56% in 2013. Former President Hugo CHAVEZ's efforts to increase the government's control of the economy by nationalizing firms in the agribusiness, financial, construction, oil, and steel sectors hurt the private investment environment, reduced productive capacity, and slowed non-petroleum exports. In 2013, Venezuela continued to wrestle with housing and electricity crises, and rolling food and goods shortages, resulting from the government's unorthodox economic policies. The budget deficit for the public sector reached 17% of GDP in 2012 and was trimmed to under 10% of GDP in 2013. The Venezuelan government has maintained a regime of strict currency exchange controls since 2003. Venezuelan law now sanctions a three-tiered exchange rate system, with rates based on the government's import priorities.


GDP (purchasing power parity):
$407.4 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 34
$403.3 billion (2012 est.)
$381.9 billion (2011 est.)
note:data are in 2013 US dollars


GDP (official exchange rate):
$367.5 billion (2013 est.)


GDP - real growth rate:
1.6% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 159
5.6% (2012 est.)
4.2% (2011 est.)


GDP - per capita (PPP):
$13,600 (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 99
$13,700 (2012 est.)
$13,100 (2011 est.)
note:data are in 2013 US dollars


Gross national saving:
23.8% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 58
28.9% of GDP (2012 est.)
30.8% of GDP (2011 est.)


GDP - composition, by end use:
household consumption:62.3%
government consumption:13.2%
investment in fixed capital:17.3%
investment in inventories:5.7%
exports of goods and services:25%
imports of goods and services:-23.5%
(2013 est.)


GDP - composition, by sector of origin:
agriculture:3.7%
industry:35.5%
services:60.8% (2013 est.)


Agriculture - products:
corn, sorghum, sugarcane, rice, bananas, vegetables, coffee; beef, pork, milk, eggs; fish


Industries:
agricultural products, livestock, raw materials, machinery and equipment, transport equipment, construction materials, medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, iron and steel products, crude oil and petroleum products


Industrial production growth rate:
1% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 150

Labor force:
14.01 million (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 40


Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture:7.3%
industry:21.8%
services:70.9% (4th quarter, 2011)


Unemployment rate:
7.9% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 84
7.8% (2012 est.)


Population below poverty line:
31.6% (2011 est.)


Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%:1.7%
highest 10%:32.7% (2006)


Distribution of family income - Gini index:
39 (2011)
country comparison to the world: 67
49.5 (1998)


    Budget:
revenues:$103.4 billion
expenditures:$139.4 billion (2013 est.)


Taxes and other revenues:
28.1% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 105

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
-9.8% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 205


Public debt:
34.2% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 109
26.8% of GDP (2012 est.)
note:data cover central government debt, as well as the debt of state-owned oil company PDVSA; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include some debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intra-governmental debt; intra-governmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment; some debt instruments for the social funds are sold at public auctions


Fiscal year:
calendar year


Inflation rate (consumer prices):
56.2% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 222
21.1% (2012 est.)


Central bank discount rate:
29.5% (31 December 2010)
country comparison to the world: 3
29.5% (31 December 2009)


Commercial bank prime lending rate:
18% (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 32
16.38% (31 December 2012 est.)


Stock of narrow money:
$181.4 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 22
$162.7 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Stock of broad money:
$185.6 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 39
$166.7 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Stock of domestic credit:
$176.7 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 42
$160.1 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Market value of publicly traded shares:
$25.3 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Current account balance:
$3.195 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 34
$11.02 billion (2012 est.)


Exports:
$91.78 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 41
$97.34 billion (2012 est.)


Exports - commodities:
petroleum and petroleum products, bauxite and aluminum, minerals, chemicals, agricultural products


Exports - partners:
US 39.1%, China 14.3%, India 12%, Netherlands Antilles 7.8%, Cuba 4.6% (2012)


Imports:
$59.32 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 49
$59.31 billion (2012 est.)


Imports - commodities:
agricultural products, livestock, raw materials, machinery and equipment, transport equipment, construction materials, medical equipment, petroleum products, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, iron and steel products


Imports - partners:
US 31.7%, China 16.8%, Brazil 9.1%, Colombia 4.8% (2012)


Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$21.15 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 58
$29.89 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Debt - external:
$74.87 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 53
$75.75 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$49.9 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 55
$47.4 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$21.94 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 46
$21.25 billion (31 December 2012 est.)


Exchange rates:
bolivars (VEB) per US dollar -
6.048 (2013 est.)
4.289 (2012 est.)
2.5821 (2010 est.)
2.147 (2009)
2.147 (2008)


Energy


Electricity - production:
127.6 billion kWh (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 28


Electricity - consumption:
85.05 billion kWh (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 35


Electricity - exports:
626 million kWh (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 64


Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 212


Electricity - installed generating capacity:
27.5 million kW (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 30


Electricity - from fossil fuels:
35.7% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173


Electricity - from nuclear fuels:
0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 199


Electricity - from hydroelectric plants:
64.3% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 30


Electricity - from other renewable sources:
0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 136


Crude oil - production:
2.489 million bbl/day (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 13


Crude oil - exports:
1.645 million bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 8


Crude oil - imports:
0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 137


    Crude oil - proved reserves:
297.6 billion bbl (1 January 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1


Refined petroleum products - production:
1.11 million bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 19


Refined petroleum products - consumption:
571,000 bbl/day (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 32


Refined petroleum products - exports:
638,000 bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 11


Refined petroleum products - imports:
16,660 bbl/day (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 111


Natural gas - production:
25.28 billion cu m (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 30


Natural gas - consumption:
27.11 billion cu m (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 30


Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 202


Natural gas - imports:
2.11 billion cu m (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 46


Natural gas - proved reserves:
5.524 trillion cu m (1 January 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 8


Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy:
182.7 million Mt (2011 est.)



Communications


Telephones - main lines in use:
7.65 million (2012)
country comparison to the world: 24


Telephones - mobile cellular:
30.52 million (2012)
country comparison to the world: 34


Telephone system:
general assessment:modern and expanding
domestic:2 domestic satellite systems with 3 earth stations; recent substantial improvement in telephone service in rural areas; substantial increase in digitalization of exchanges and trunk lines; installation of a national interurban fiber-optic network capable of digital multimedia services; combined fixed and mobile-cellular telephone subscribership 130 per 100 persons
international:country code - 58; submarine cable systems provide connectivity to Cuba and the Caribbean, Central and South America, and US; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) and 1 PanAmSat; participating with Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia in the construction of an international fiber-optic network (2013)



    Broadcast media:
government supervises a mixture of state-run and private broadcast media; 13 public service networks, 61 privately owned TV networks, a privately owned news channel with limited national coverage, and a government-backed pan-American channel; state-run radio network includes roughly 65 news stations and another 30 stations targeted at specific audiences; state-sponsored community broadcasters include 235 radio stations and 44 TV stations; the number of private broadcast radio stations has been declining, but many still remain in operation (2014)


Internet country code:
.ve


Internet hosts:
1.016 million (2012)
country comparison to the world: 46


Internet users:
8.918 million (2009)
country comparison to the world: 32



Transportation


Airports
444 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 19


Airports - with paved runways
total:127
over 3,047 m:6
2,438 to 3,047 m:9
1,524 to 2,437 m:33
914 to 1,523 m:62
under 914 m:17 (2013)


Airports - with unpaved runways
total:317
2,438 to 3,047 m:3
1,524 to 2,437 m:57
914 to 1,523 m:127
under 914 m:
130 (2013)


Heliports
3 (2013)


Pipelines
extra heavy crude 981 km; gas 5,941 km; oil 7,588 km; refined products 1,778 km (2013)


Railways
total:806 kmcountry comparison to the world: 98
standard gauge:806 km 1.435-m gauge (41 km electrified) (2008)


    Roadways
total:96,155 kmcountry comparison to the world: 48
paved:32,308 km
unpaved:63,847 km (2002)


Waterways
7,100 km (the Orinoco River (400 km) and Lake de Maracaibo are navigable by oceangoing vessels) (2011)
country comparison to the world: 21


Merchant marine
total:53country comparison to the world: 69
by type:bulk carrier 4, cargo 12, chemical tanker 1, liquefied gas 5, passenger 1, passenger/cargo 14, petroleum tanker 16
foreign-owned:9 (Denmark 1, Estonia 1, Germany 1, Greece 4, Mexico 1, Spain 1)
registered in other countries:14 (Panama 13, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1) (2010)



Ports and terminals
major seaport(s):La Guaira, Maracaibo, Puerto Cabello, Punta Cardon
oil terminals:Jose terminal


Transportation - note
the International Maritime Bureau reports the territorial and offshore waters in the Caribbean Sea as a significant risk for piracy and armed robbery against ships; numerous vessels, including commercial shipping and pleasure craft, have been attacked and hijacked both at anchor and while underway; crews have been robbed and stores or cargoes stolen



Military


Military branches
Bolivarian National Armed Forces (Fuerza Armada Nacional Bolivariana, FANB): Bolivarian Army (Ejercito Bolivariano, EB), Bolivarian Navy (Armada Bolivariana, AB; includes Naval Infantry, Coast Guard, Naval Aviation), Bolivarian Military Aviation (Aviacion Militar Bolivariana, AMB; includes Air National Guard), Bolivarian National Guard (Guardia Nacional Bolivaria, GNB) (2013)


Military service age and obligation
18-30 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; 30-month conscript service obligation; Navy requires 6th-grade education for enlisted personnel; all citizens of military service age (18-60 years old) are obligated to register for military service (2012)


Manpower available for military service
males age 16-49:7,013,854
females age 16-49:7,165,661 (2010 est.)


    Manpower fit for military service
males age 16-49:5,614,743
females age 16-49:6,074,834 (2010 est.)


Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually
male:277,210
female:273,353 (2010 est.)


Military expenditures
1.05% of GDP (2012)
country comparison to the world: 98
0.75% of GDP (2011)
1.05% of GDP (2010)


Transnational Issues


Disputes - international
claims all of the area west of the Essequibo River in Guyana, preventing any discussion of a maritime boundary; Guyana has expressed its intention to join Barbados in asserting claims before the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea that Trinidad and Tobago's maritime boundary with Venezuela extends into their waters; dispute with Colombia over maritime boundary and Venezuelan administered Los Monjes islands near the Gulf of Venezuela; Colombian organized illegal narcotics and paramilitary activities penetrate Venezuela's shared border region; US, France, and the Netherlands recognize Venezuela's granting full effect to Aves Island, thereby claiming a Venezuelan Economic Exclusion Zone/continental shelf extending over a large portion of the eastern Caribbean Sea; Dominica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines protest Venezuela's full effect claim


    Refugees and internally displaced persons
refugees (country of origin):204,259 (Colombia) (2013)


Trafficking in persons



Illicit drugs
small-scale illicit producer of opium and coca for the processing of opiates and coca derivatives; however, large quantities of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana transit the country from Colombia bound for US and Europe; significant narcotics-related money-laundering activity, especially along the border with Colombia and on Margarita Island; active eradication program primarily targeting opium; increasing signs of drug-related activities by Colombian insurgents on border

Information provided by CIA - The World Fact Book



Doing Business in Venezuela, RB 2015


           
 

 
Venezuela, RB

  Ease of Doing Business (rank)
Overall DTF (distance to frontier)
182
41.41
 
 
Starting a Business (rank)
182
 
 
Paying Taxes (rank)
188
 
  DTF
45.23
 
  DTF
13.37
 
  Procedures (number)
17
 
  Payments (number per year)
71
 
  Time (days)
144
 
  Time (hours per year)
792
 
  Cost (% of income per capita)
49.9
 
  Profit tax (%)
10.3
 
  Paid-in min. capital (% of income per capita)
0.0
 
  Labor tax and contributions (%)
18.0
 
 

 
  Other taxes (%)
37.1
 
  Dealing with Construction Permits (rank)
152
 
  Total tax rate (% of profit)
65.5
 
  DTF
59.34
 
 

 
  Procedures (number)
9
 
  Trading Across Borders (rank)
176
 
  Time (days)
380
 
  DTF
25.55
 
  Cost (% of warehouse value)
1.2
 
  Documents to export (number)
8
 
   
 
 
  Time to export (days)
56
 
  Getting Electricity (rank)
155
 
  Cost to export (US$ per container)
3,490.00
 
  DTF
57.21
 
  Cost to export (deflated US$ per container)
3,490.00
 
  Procedures (number)
6
 
  Documents to import (number)
9
 
  Time (days)
178
 
  Time to import (days)
82
 
   Cost (% of income per capita)
714.1
 
  Cost to import (US$ per container)
3,695.00
 
   
 
 
  Cost to import (deflated US$ per container)
3,695.00
 
  Registering Property (rank)
102
 
 

 
  DTF
64.12
 
  Enforcing Contracts (rank)
79
 
  Procedures (number)
9
 
  DTF
60.89
 
  Time (days)
52
 
  Time (days)
610
 
  Cost (% of property value)
2.5
 
  Cost (% of claim)
43.7
 
 
 
 
  Procedures (number)
30
 
  Getting Credit (rank)
104
 
 

 
  DTF
40
 
  Resolving Insolvency (rank)
165
 
  Strength of legal rights index (0-12)
1
 
  DTF
19.2
 
  Depth of credit information index (0-8)
7
 
  Time (years)
4
 
  Credit registry coverage (% of adults)
0.0
 
  Cost (% of estate)
38
 
  Credit bureau coverage (% of adults)
28.7
 
  Outcome(0 as piecemeal sale and 1 as going concern)
0
 
 

 
  Recovery rate (cents on the dollar)
6.7
 
  Protecting Minority Investors (rank)
178
 
  Commencement of proceedings index (0-3)
2
 
  DTF
29.17
 
  Management of debtor's assets index (0-6)
2
 
  Extent of disclosure index (0-10)
3
 
  Reorganization proceedings index (0-3)
0
 
  Extent of director liability index (0-10)
2
 
  Creditor participation index (0-4)
1
 
  Ease of shareholder suits index (0-10)
3
 
  Strength of insolvency framework index (0-16)
5
 
  Extent of conflict of interest regulation index (0-10)
2.7
 
 

 
  Extent of shareholder rights index (0-10.5)
6
 
 

 
  Strength of governance structure index (0-10.5)
2.5
 
 

 
  Extent of corporate transparency index (0-9)
1
 
 

 
  Extent of shareholder governance index (0-10)
3.2
 
 

 
  Strength of minority investor protection index (0-10)
2.9
 
 

 
 
 
 
 



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