Desperate to hold on to his dwindling power, Venezuelan thug-in-chief Hugo Chavez has now officially moved to seize a private farm supply company. Tuck this euphemism in the memory bank: “Forced acquisition.”
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez signed a decree Monday to expropriate a leading farm-supply business, promising to bring down prices of seeds and fertilizers as his government takes control.
Chavez said Monday night that he signed the decree for the “forced acquisition” of Agroislena CA.
“We’re going to pay them what it really costs,” he said in a telephone call to a talk show on state television. He read aloud parts of the decree, which takes effect on Tuesday, saying the company had become an “oligopoly” and was speculating with prices of goods such as fertilizer.
He called it a step toward boosting Venezuelan agriculture that would also bring down production costs.
Agroislena was founded in Venezuela more than five decades ago by Spanish immigrants from the Canary Islands and has grown into a market leader with branches across the country.
The company’s board of directors rejected the measure in a statement earlier Monday and urged Chavez to reconsider.
He’s already expropriated everything from “cement to retail stores.” An opposition leader who blasted Chavez’s failed farm seizures speaks a truth that resonates far beyond Venezuela’s borders:
“Everything that falls into the hands of the government is destroyed,” [Jose Manuel] Gonzalez said.
More coverage at Babalu Blog.