The Petrostate, Visualized


This is just the coolest visualization tool ever.

Venezuelan Exports in 1995

Venezuelan Exports in 1995
That was then

Venezuelan Exports in 2010:

This is now

(These static images don’t really do the visualization-platform justice, you have to go to the original.)

[Hat Tip under litigation.]

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  1. For the fun of it look at the big red block in the bottom right corner “toilet paper exports”. We used to export lots of toilet paper !! See how it gradually vanishes… I wonder if there is a hidden correlation here…

  2. Exports grew from 19 billion to 91 Billion in ten years yes, thanks to oil prices, which is one of the reasons why all other exports contribute so little to Total Exports in 2010. To my disbelief, Iron Ore, Aluminum exports have not fallen drastically in dollar value. But again, commodity prices have gone up considerably due to the BRIC effect.

  3. Curious as to why “Petroleum, Oils, Refined” fluctuates so much. It goes from 9% to 24%, and doesn’t seem to correlate to anything.

  4. All I see is that exports grew 4.5x, did you expect the country to eat 2 mmbd so that it only exports $15 billion a year?

    Sometimes you people can’t help yourself with the bad posts, I mean all you had to do was just crop out the total exports from the top and it would have been more effective propaganda, but then I also remember that you just have to fart in the general direction about “hyperinflation” and the post is taken at face value.

    • Shame exports (and the economy) has grown, but not at equal pace. What’s scary is how vulnerable we are as a nation to oil price swings. Situation that has worsened. We, today are not more productive, it is just that the oil that we produce, is today sold at a higher price.

      • But it is ridiculous to expect the country to eat, swallow, consume 2 mmbd just so we don’t feel exposed to oil prices. We do what we always must, invest in the country and people, not let transnationals take all that money and run.

        • The point is Chavez’s revolution has done nothing revolutionary with exports, despite spending magnitudes more to encourage them than previous governments. Ergo, Chavez wasted a lot of money.

  5. I wonder what Venezuela’s export income would be in 2012 if we exported the volumes of 1995 at the prices of 2012 vs what we recieve now by way of exports ? then you might be able to compare the cost of Chavez mismanagement and corruption vs the situation Venezuela might know now if Chavez hadnt come to power.

    • Hmmmm. Its not like there was a well-diversified economy before 1998 either…. Mismanagement yes but how rosy would the alternative actually be…

      • If diversification doesnt bring you more income its irrelevant , diversification for diversification’s sake is not a goal . export income increase is !! In Venezuela oil export income is subject to 3 variables , total crude production exported, total refined product production exported ( refined products usually bring in higher prices) , level of prices at which the crude and products are sold ( depends on market to which it is destined , terms of sale etc) , My own guess is that if we were exporting now the volumes of crude and products we were exporting in say 2000 at todays optimal market prices ( no geopolitical discounts , USGC and USEC prices not chinese prices ) the difference in oil export income would be substantially more favourable . To that we might add the additional income Venezuela got then from exporting aluminum and other mineral ore sales.(at todays prices) . There would be no need for foreign currency rationing , no shortages , and maybe no inflation of the kind we are seeing now.

  6. I know people working at RUALCA. The company was exporting 95% of its products by 1998 and had big plans of expansion. It had gone from being a mere provider for Ford in Valencia to producing more wheels for the export and planning to diversify.

    Take a look here (“Rualca”) and keep a handkerchief at hand:

    There were hundreds of companies like that in the late nineties.

    And then came Chávez.

    Do you know what happened to Rualca?

  7. 30% of 20 billion is about the same as 7% of 91 billion. Does this mean that non-petroleum exports have stayed around the same level?


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