Chapter 1. Socioeconomic Order and the Function of the
The economic regime of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is based on the principles of social justice, democratization, efficiency, free competition, protection of the environment, productivity and solidarity, with a view to ensuring overall human development and a dignified and useful existence for the community.
The State, jointly with private initiative, shall promote the harmonious development of the national economy, to the end of generating sources of employment, a high rate of domestic added value, raising the standard of living of the population and strengthen the economical sovereignty of the country, guaranteeing the reliability of the law; the solid, dynamic, sustainable, continuing and equitable growth of the economy to ensure a just distribution of wealth through participatory democratic strategic planning with open consultation.
National laws shall establish the conditions for the creation of functionally decentralized entities to carry out social or entrepreneurial activities, with a view to ensuring the reasonable economic and social productivity of the public resources invested in such activities.
The State reserves to itself the use of trade policy to protect the economic activities of public and private Venezuelan enterprises.
Business enterprises, organs or persons of foreign nationality shall not be granted with regimes more advantageous than those established for Venezuelan nationals.
Foreign investment is subject to the same conditions as domestic investment.
The State reserves to itself, through the pertinent organic law, and for reasons of national expediency, the petroleum industry and other industries, operations and goods and services which are in the public interest and of a strategic nature.
The State shall promote the domestic manufacture of raw materials deriving from the exploitation of nonrenewable natural resources, with a view to assimilating, creating and inventing technologies, generating employment and economic growth and creating wealth and well-being for the people.
For reasons of economic and political sovereignty and national strategy,
The State shall retain all shares of Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. or the organ created to manage the petroleum industry, with the exception of the following which do business with Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A:
- strategic joint ventures
- business enterprises
- any other venture current or future.
All waters are property in the Nation’s public domain.
The necessary provisions shall be established by law to guarantee the protection, utilization, and recuperation thereof, respecting the phases of the hydrological cycle and zoning criteria.
The State shall promote sustainable agriculture as the strategic basis for overall rural development, and consequently shall guarantee the population a secure food supply, defined as the sufficient and stable availability of food within the national sphere and timely and uninterrupted access to the same for consumers.
A secure food supply must be achieved by developing and prioritizing internal agricultural and livestock production, understood as production deriving from the activities of agriculture, livestock, fishing and aquiculture. Food production is in the national interest and is fundamental to the economic and social development of the Nation. To this end, the State shall promulgate such financial, commercial, technological transfer, land tenancy, infrastructure, manpower training and other measures as may be necessary to achieve strategic levels of self-sufficiency.
In addition, it shall promote actions in the national and international economic context to compensate for the disadvantages inherent to agricultural activity.
The State shall protect the settlement and communities of non industrialized fishermen, as well as their fishing banks in continental waters and those close to the coastline, as defined by law.
The State shall promote conditions for overall rural development, for the purpose of generating employment and ensuring the rural population an adequate level of well-being, as well as their inclusion in national development.
It shall likewise promote agricultural activity and optimum land use by providing infrastructure projects, supplies, loans, training services and technical assistance.
The predominance of large land estates is contrary to the interests of society.
Appropriate tax law provisions shall be enacted to tax fallow lands and establish the necessary measures to transform them into productive economic units, likewise recovering arable land.
Farmers and other agricultural producers are entitled to own land, in the cases and forms specified under the pertinent law. The State shall protect and promote associative and private forms of property in such manner as to guarantee agricultural production. The State shall see to the sustainable ordering of arable land to guarantee its food producing potential.
In exceptional cases, quasi-tax contributions shall be created to provide funds for financing, research, technical assistance, transfer of technology and other activities that promote the productivity and competitiveness of the agricultural sector. These matters shall be appropriately regulated by law.
The State shall protect and promote small and medium-sized manufacturers, cooperatives, savings funds, family owned businesses, small businesses and any other form of community association for purposes of work, savings and consumption, under an arrangement of collective ownership, to strength the country’s economic development, based on the initiative of the people.
Training, technical assistance and appropriate financing shall be guaranteed.
Typical Venezuelan crafts and folk industries shall enjoy the special protection of the State, in order to preserve their authenticity, and they shall receive credit facilities to promote production and marketing.
Tourism is an economic activity in the national interest, and represents a high priority in the country’s strategy of diversification and sustainable development. As part of the foundation of the socioeconomic regime contemplated by this Constitution, the State shall promulgate measures to guarantee the development of tourism. The State shall see to the creation and strengthening of a national tourist industry.