Caracas — The decline of the incipient economic rebound that Venezuela had seen last year has had an effect on the commercial activity of companies that had harbored great expectations for 2023, with restaurants and hotels the sectors that suffered the most, according to the latest report of the country’s commerce and services council (Consecomercio).
Sales in both sectors fell 68% during the first five months of this year compared to the same period of 2022, according to Tiziana Polesel, president of the Venezuelan business organization, in statements to the press.
These were not the only sectors that experienced a drop in revenues due to the slowdown in economic activity, however, with liquor sales down 57%, the services sector seeing a decline of 55%, clothing sales 48%, automotive parts 38% and e-commerce 32%, all compared to the same period of 2022.
The economic slowdown that impacts consumption also evidenced how the Venezuelan capital has concentrated the highest percentage of sales, registering a drop of only 21% compared to cities such as Maracaibo, in Zulia state, or San Cristóbal, in Táchira state, which saw consumption drop 34%, or Anzoátegui, in Monagas state, and Sucre and Nueva Esparta, with a drop of 44%.
After the Venezuela’s GDP expanded by 2022, according to official figures, the economy saw a slowdown in commercial activity that has had a significant impact on entrepreneurs.
“Most businesses are now working on reviewing their expenditure and seeing where they can cut back. There are other businesses that are concentrating only on the most successful product lines”, Polesel said regarding businesses’ commercial strategies that are focusing on prioritizing discounts and offering promotions.
It is estimated that during the second half of this year there could be an economic recovery, however, Consecomercio advised caution with investments.