The low supply of houses in Venezuela continues to push up
the prices, while low social interest rates on loans and government
direct subsidies are encouraging an unmet demand.
During the first quarter, real estate prices in the Caracas Metropolitan area remained on the high. Preliminary figures disclosed by market research firm Organización Akros show that in the first three months prices jumped some 9.42-17 percent.
The increase in the Baruta municipality was 17 percent; in Libertador municipality, 13.85 percent; in Sucre municipality, 13.34 percent and 9.42 percent in Chacao. El Hatillo municipality was the only area where prices decreased -with a fall of 2.04 percent.
Based on such increase, the price per square meter ranges from VEB 1.18 million (USD 550) to VEB 2.6 million (USD 1,200). At the end of 2005, prices were at VEB 1.03 million (USD 480) and VEB 2.46 million (USD 1,145).
LOPEZ CASE HRW endorsed the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights' call on Venezuela to release Leopoldo López.
LOPEZ CASE Without giving many details, Venezuelan Congress' Speaker Diosdado Cabello has claimed he saved opposition leader Leopoldo López's life, adding that there were no negotiations whatsoever days before the dissenter turned himself in to the Bolivarian National Guard earlier this year. "He (López) knew it (information about his possible assassination), too. Why did he turn himself in? He and his family were aware of that," said the legislator in an interview with daily newspaper El Universal.
HUMAN RIGHTS The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, expressed serious concern on Monday at the continued detention of Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López, as well as more than 69 other people who were arrested in the context of public protests that took place across Venezuela over several months starting in February this year.