Beef imports in Venezuela climb 181.7% in a year
Purchases during the first half of 2012 were 45% higher than in the same period in 2011
From January through June 2011, Venezuela imported 19,647 tons of beef whereas during the same period of 2012, some 55,360 tons were imported, according to data disclosed by the National Statistics Institute (INE).
To afford such purchases, USD 177.4 million was provided in 2011, and this year said amount increased to USD 567.3 million. Thus, beef import cost rose 219.7%.
Nicaragua is Venezuela's main beef supplier. During the first half of 2012, Nicaragua exported as much as USD 107.8 million to Venezuela. Brazil and Uruguay ranked second and third, respectively.
Regarding Colombia-Venezuela beef trade, the INE did not report any trade activity between the two countries during the first half of 2011, yet after signing a new trade agreement, such trend changed radically.
Over the last six months, Venezuela imported 4,355 tons of beef from Colombia for USD 23.3 million, almost displacing Argentina to the fourth position in the rank of beef suppliers.
Import of live cattle reported a 71.5% rise during the first half of 2012 as against the same period in 2011.
INE's data shows that the cost of these purchases soared 97.5% in a year as they leaped from USD 243.7 million in 2011 to USD 481.6 million in 2012.
Translated by Jhean Cabrera
As Venezuelan deposits of public funds in Swiss bank accounts have been revealed, opposition Deputy Andrés Velásquez wonders whatever happened to the USD 500 million worth of CVG funds that turned up in coded bank accounts in Lebanon five years ago.