A group of 200 Venezuelan migrants was relocated from the Brazilian city of Boa Vista to Canoas, some 3,700 kilometers south, as part of an ongoing effort by Brasilia to lessen the impact of the migrant influx in the country’s north region.
While the vast majority of Venezuelans who leave the country over land head into Colombia, Brazil has not been spared the effects of the migrant crisis. Between January 2017 and August 2018, 120,000 Venezuelans entered Brazil, with many of them doing so on foot through the northern province of Roraima.
The recent influx of Venezuelans into Roraima has resulted in xenophobic violence. On August 18 of this year, an angry mob destroyed a Venezuelan migrant camp in the town of Pacaraima and forced its inhabitants to flee back into Venezuela after a local Brazilian man was stabbed by two Venezuelan migrants.
Maduro Heading to China to “Elevate” Relationship with Beijing
Shortly before boarding his plane, Maduro said that he had “great and positive expectations for Venezuela” related to the trip, and that he was hoping to strengthen the country’s relationship with China on a number of fronts, including energy and finance.
Maduro also revealed that vice president Delcy Rodriguez has been in Beijing since Monday as part of the same diplomatic mission.
On his Twitter account, Maduro shared a short clip showing him boarding the plane to China. Below, the tweet:
Two Top Banks Cast Doubt on Currency Exchange Changes
Two of the country’s largest banks told EFE that the regime’s recent announcement regarding the easing of restrictions on the sale and purchase of foreign currency has yet to have concrete effects, and that they have seen no indication that the new measures will actually be implemented.
According to one source, which spoke to the publication on the condition of anonymity, said that because the regime has not been clear on what exactly the new currency exchange rules look like, the entities have been unable to take any action on the matter.
The source said:
The government’s announcement sounds more like propaganda.
Last Friday, the Banco Central de Venezuela (BCV) and the Ministry of the Economy and Finance announced that Venezuelans would now be able to buy and sell foreign currency at any bank in the country, upending nearly two decades of strict currency exchange controls. These controls required that all foreign currency be traded through a government agency tasked with overseeing the transactions.
Yesterday afternoon, Vice President of the Economy Tarek El Aissami said in a televised address that all of the nation’s banks were now able to exchange currency, suggesting that the measure was now in effect.
However, the two banking sources told EFE that this was not the case. One source told the publication:
There’s been no decision [about banks allowing currency exchange]. Until [the new measures] are made really clear, there’ll be no news. No bank is going to sell or buy dollars until the mechanism is explained in detailed by the government.
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