Opposition Candidates II: Economic ideas from Petkoff’s interview

January 16, 2006


So far,
nobody has taken up my invitation to write in favor or against any of the
opposition candidates. The article by Mayobre below remains the only
contribution to understanding what the opposition is offering. Yesterday,
Teodoro Petkoff had an interview
in El Universal,
I will list his thoughts on economic matters (which people
have asked about) to try to get the ball rolling again. I have tried to remove as
much as possible
the criticism to the Chavez Government so that they are ideas
that stand on their own and can be discussed as such. I will do the same as
opposition candidates give interviews or speak in the next few months on matters of substance.

The
highlights of the interview in terms of economic opinions:

–It is
evident that the roots of poverty are sunk in the high volumes of unemployment
and sub employment that we have in the country. The sources of employment arise
from investment and for there to be investments, public or private, there has
to be a Government with the determination to invest in plans and projects that
lead to the creation of jobs.


–A great
plan of public works on the matter of infrastructure is absolutely necessary.


–You have
to favor, with macroeconomic and institutional policies, a climate that would attract
private investment because, at the end of the day, the first employer of the country
is the private sector.

–A foreign
exchange policy that permanently maintains the Bolivar overvalued favors what
happened last year: US$ 25 billion in imports and there is no formal private or
cooperative sector that can resist the weight of such competition.

–There has
to be a policy for the construction of housing to attack both the topic of the
housing shortage and create employment.

–You can
not continue punishing the people with a VAT of 14% and it is absolutely
necessary to eliminate the debit tax to all financial transaction, which can
not be justified due to the magnitude of the oil income.

–It is a
shame that in seven years this Government has not been able to create a new
social security system, that has an absolute priority in the immediate future.

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