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Venezuelan president increases the minimum wage 300%

Venezuela’s president Nicolas Maduro increases the minimum wage by 300%, to 18,000 bolivares a month.

Venezuela's president Nicolas Maduro has ordered a minimum wage increase of 300% to 18,000 bolivares a month during a state union address on Monday.

Maduro also pledged to ramp up oil production to 5 million barrels per day by 2025.

In his four-hour long broadcasted address, Maduro said, he would personally take on the responsibility to increase production.

‘I’m betting my life, my honour, for this battle.’ Maduro said.

The wage hike is set to take effect as early as this week, but analysts say it will do little to save the country’s deep financial crisis.

The new minimum wage of 18,000 bolivars per month equates to roughly $7 at the black-market exchange rate and would only be enough to purchase basic ingredients such as a carton of eggs and a kilo of beef.

Analysts say Maduro’s speech left little to be desired, as he had already hiked the minimum wage six times in 2018.

Maduro said investment from China, Russia, Turkey and Qatar could help rebuild local industries and that his second term would usher in a new boom in Venezuela.

Maduro calls Bolsonaro modern day Hitler

As Venezuela’s financial crisis deepens, Maduro’s critics increase, particularly those in the US, who have called him a dictator with failed policies.

Maduro remains defensive of claims, constantly hitting back at critics and proclaiming he is a victim of an ‘economic war’ lead by the US.

During his speech on Monday, Maduro called out Brazil’s newly appointed president, Jair Bolsanaro, calling him a Hitler of the modern era. ‘Over there we've got Brazil in the hands of a fascist – Bolsonaro is a Hitler of the modern era!’ Maduro said

The comment was triggered after Brasilia officially recognized an opposition leader as the legitimate head of Venezuela, claiming the re-election of Maduro had been rigged.

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