Economy World

Venezuela: Chavez threatens to nationalize banks

Several private banks could be nationalized Venezuelan if they refuse to finance small agricultural producers, said Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez during a speech on the Univision television network on Sunday.

“I am ready to nationalize private banks if they do not grant such funding, I will do it without problems,” said Chavez.

These include banks Banesco, Mercantil and Provincial.

The banks are obliged by the law of Venezuela to participate in the financing of government programs and projects.

After coming to power in 1999, Hugo Chavez began a process of nationalization in various fields of industry. The former bosses often challenge in court those decisions of the government.

About 20 trials involving nationalizations are currently underway. The most important dispute erupted with the companies Exxon and ConocoPhillips about their projects to develop oil fields in the Orinoco River basin.

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