Credit in Venezuela has increased up to 29,900% during the last months, thus showing its reactivation after four years.
According to calculations made by Ecoanalítica, in April Venezuela’s loan portfolio stood at $415 million, which represents an increase of 219% compared to April 2020, when it stood at $130 million.
In this sense, the head of the consulting firm Ecoanalítica, Luis Arturo Bárcenas, explained that banks have begun to increase consumer credit when they see that a part of the population has reported an improvement in their income.
Bárcenas stressed that “we are in a dollarized environment, and, probably, the banks are seeing this as good news in terms of repaying their credits.” He also added that now people declare more income in dollars, so their ability to repay the credit is greater.
He asserted that there is currently no normal and traditional financing mechanism that promotes investment, the purchasing of goods, or helps more people to have a more hopeful vision of the future.
The economist pointed out that the decline in financing has several causes, including the economic downturn since 2013, the hyperinflation that the country experienced from 2017 to 2021, and the pandemic. He did not mention criminal US and European sanctions and blockade.
“What they are financing right now is pure current spending, nothing more than that, and not all Venezuelans, as it was at some point, we have access to credit cards [again],” he stressed.
It is worth remembering that last April some banks increased the limits of credit cards. At that time, Banesco, Banco del Tesoro and Bancaribe notified their clients that they increased credit card limits. But this measure is not wide spread among all the banks in Venezuela and even in some banks the credit card resumption is not available for all users.
In the case of Banesco , the limits increased to Bs150, an amount equivalent to $30, in relation to the official rate of the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV). Meanwhile, in Banco del Tesoro, some users have up to Bs250 available, an amount that in foreign currency exceeds $55.
(RedRadioVE) by Ana Perdigón
Translation: Orinoco Tribune