Venezuela strike: No solution in sight

| Monday, December 30, 2002

Due to a nationwide strike aimed at forcing out its president, Venezuela, the world's fifth-largest oil exporter, must import fuel to their own use. As truckers and motorists line up at fueling stations, reports this week say Brazil will ship 520,000 barrels of fuel to Venezuela by the weekend.

The strike, now almost a month old, continues to paralyze Venezuela's petroleum industry, which usually supplies the United States with 14 percent of its oil and is a top supplier of home heating oil to the U.S. The drop of export orders is reportedly depriving Venezuela of $50 million a day in revenue.

According to AP reports, Dominican Republic said it would send food as a partial payment for oil it has received in the past and Colombia may send milk and meat.

Venezuelan labor, business and political leaders launched the strike on Dec. 2 with the intent to topple President Hugo Chavez, a man they blame for the nation's serious state of recession. They want him to resign and have demanded an early election.

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