Friday, January 22, 2016
Smuggling soars as Venezuela's economy sinks
Driven by a deepening economic crisis, smuggling across Venezuela's land and maritime borders - as well as illicit domestic trading - has accelerated to unprecedented levels and is transforming society. Although smuggling has a centuries-old history here, the socialist government's generous subsidies and a currency collapse have given it a dramatic new impetus. As the formal economy tanks and businesses go under, more and more people have turned to myriad illicit schemes to trade food, medicine and gasoline. Criminal gangs, the poor, professionals and government officials are all cashing in.