How will Chavez’s victory impact the world?

As Venezuelans vote President Hugo Chavez for another term, we ask what he can accomplish at home and beyond
“In foreign relations, the president has followed the same kind of policy [as his domestic policy], dividing, polarising, always going against whoever is not following his policies and that is something that will continue obviously. I don’t think [there will be] any change in that even though he is truly dependent on the US market especially for the oil.
– Laura Rojas, a Capriles campaign member

“We have to recognise there is an enormous division between the United States and Canada on one side and the rest of Latin America [on the other] …. Domestically there is also an enormous divide, so constantly to blame Chavez for dividing the continent or for dividing the country is, I think, a way to paper over very profound differences that do exist. And Chavez is trying to resolve these differences precisely by building up the strength of Latin America.
– Gregory Wilpert, an author


CHAVEZ’S DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN POLICY

  • Hugo Chavez: “This has been a perfect battle, a democratic battle”
  • Chavez has promised to respond with more efficiency to people’s needs
  • He has heavily invested oil revenues in anti-poverty programmes
  • Under Chavez’s rule, Venezuela’s poverty has dropped dramatically from 49 per cent in 1999 to 24 per cent in 2009
  • Crime has soared under Chavez, with murders tripling in the last 12 years
  • Widespread power outages in 2011 led to the rationing of electricity
  • Venezuela also faces a major housing shortage – at least 2 million housing units are needed for the poor living in slums
  • Chavez has been a vocal supporter of Cuba, Iran, Syria and Belarus
  • Russia and China have expanded investment in Venezuela
  • Chavez sends subsidised oil to allies around the world
  • Venezuela sends about $3 billion worth of oil to Cuba yearly, in exchange of which Cuba sends doctors to Venezuela
Read more from the source: Aljazeera
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