Venezuela allocates 59% of dollar revenue to pay for imports
The balance-of-payments current account balance plummeted 41%
In his year-end report, President of the Central Bank of Venezuela Nelson Merentes stated that in 2012, imports totaled USD 56.35 billion, the highest amount in the last 16 years. The number amounts to 59% of the dollar revenues Venezuela obtained from exports.
Venezuela's economy is going through a cycle where imports are higher than dollar revenues because the price of oil, which provides 96% of foreign currency revenue, has stabilized.
In 2011, imports accounted for 50% of foreign currency earnings from exports. In 2008, which until now had been the record year, they amounted to 53%.
Dollars from exports not only are used to pay for imports but also to meet other commitments in foreign currency.
While the country's situation is not critical in this respect, the gap between imports, services purchased abroad and transfers, and the foreign currency revenue from exports, which is technically known as the balance-of-payments current account, fell 41%, from USD 24.61 billion in 2011 to USD 14.56 billion in 2012.
A shipment of over 30,000 tons of phosphate arrived at Puerto Cabello port in late July on board the Shi Long Ling, a Chinese-flagged vessel that began its long journey in northern Africa. The cargo boat docked on July 26 after traveling more than 3,200 nautical miles. Undoubtedly, this would just be considered one in many cargo ships crisscrossing the oceans if it were not for the fact that Venezuela has denounced Western Sahara occupation by Morocco and yet purchases the territory's natural resource products from the occupying power.