Today there’s rarely if ever good economic news from Venezuela. But the country’s already collapsing economy may be closer to outright crashing. And that has serious repercussions for South Florida.
Italian tire maker Pirelli announced Tuesday it’s suspending operations in Venezuela. United Airlines this week stopped service to Venezuela. General Motors said last month it’s leaving Venezuela. The reason: Venezuela is suffering the world’s worst economic implosion.
And it could get even worse very soon. The Miami-based Latin American Herald Tribune reports Venezuela defaulted on $1 billion it owes Russia. That raises the specter of a more full-blown and catastrophic Venezuelan debt default.
On top of that, the Trump Administration is considering stopping oil imports from Venezuela – the U.S’s third largest foreign supplier.
The goal would be to punish Venezuela’s authoritarian socialist regime for violence against anti-government protests against President Nicolás Maduro – who is widely blamed for the economic disaster.
More Venezuelan meltdown means more Venezuelan migration. Last year U.S. asylum requests from Venezuela rose 150 percent – making the country the world’s top source for such requests. Most Venezuelan migrants come to South Florida.