Categories: Venezuela

Consecomercio pointed out that sales in the country have fallen by 35% compared to last year

An employee waits for customers at a photo shop that now sells food, a consequence of the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, in the Chacao neighborhood in Caracas on July 15th, 2020, amid the coronavirus pandemic lockdowns. – The COVID-19 pandemic, which arrived in Venezuela in mid-March and had infected some 10,000 people, according to official figures, forced the closure of 90% of businesses in the Caribbean country, according to the private merchants association “Consecomercio”. Only supermarkets, pharmacies and other businesses deemed “essential” by the socialist government were exempt from the national lockdown, which had been intensified in Caracas due to the spread of the virus. (Photo by Federico PARRA / AFP)


So far in 2023 according to figures from Consecomercio, sales in the retail sector have fallen between 30% and 35% compared to January and February of last year.

By Rosimar Sánchez / Correspondent

The President of Consecomercio, Tiziana Polesel, indicated that low purchasing power, inflation, the exchange differential and the lack of consumer credit are some of the reasons that affect the contraction of economic activity.

“This is a country where if an appliance in your home breaks down, and you cannot replace it the next day with a credit card. That means we’re still in trouble. A worker whose salary is pulverized in minutes in his pocket once he receives its salary. This is also a problem,” she said during a press conference in Puerto Cabello, Carabobo State.

She pointed out that to this one must add fiscal voracity and high taxes that translate into an increase in the final prices of the products.

In addition, Polesel reported that 30% of commerce nationwide has not been able to open its doors after the pandemic.

She mentioned that there are cases where a company had 20 branches (outlets) and now it only has three.

“Statistically this business did not close, but it did close points of sale. In some cities of the country they are running out of services, people have to go to nearby cities to buy certain products. That happens with banks: there are cities in the country that do not have a single banking agency, neither private nor public, and they have to travel up to two hours,” she said.

Consolidate exports

The President of Consecomercio stressed that after the contraction of the national economy, one of the alternatives is to work on the export of products and services.

However, she emphasized that for this to happen, Venezuelan trade has to be more competitive, which translates into having rational taxes, optimal public services, increasing internet connectivity and air connections, as well as having efficient ports.

“If a product does not arrive on time at the port, it will not arrive on time at the final destination and we lose a customer there. This must be worked on four axes: transparency, simplification of procedures, harmonization and standardization, principles that make us efficient in our ports,” she remarked.

On the other hand, Polesel announced that the 53rd Assembly of Consecomercio will be held in Puerto Cabello on June 29th and 30th, in which 80 commerce chambers of the country and the sectors that integrate Fedecámaras will participate.

Source: La Patilla

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