February 16, 2007

SKIMMING THEIR CREAM (via Tom Morin):

Professionals Exit Venezuela: Chávez's Grip on Power Drives Out Oil Experts; Support Hugo or You Go (PETER MILLARD, February 15, 2007, Wall Street Journal)

[T]t the U.S. Embassy call center for visas in Caracas, the lines have been jammed since Mr. Chávez announced in early January the nationalization of the electricity industry and Venezuela's largest telecommunications firm. "It doubled practically overnight," said a U.S. diplomat.

The number of Venezuelans receiving U.S. legal permanent residence more than doubled from 2000 to 2005, when 10,870 got their green cards. In that period the overall number of green cards increased by a third. During that period the number of Venezuelan-born U.S. residents increased 42%, to 151,743, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

The oil industry appears to be taking notice of the available talent. Qatar Petroleum has run ads in local papers this year, offering tax-free salaries for geologists, reservoir engineers and geophysicists.

Canadian immigration law firm Benchetrit & Associates recently held four days of seminars in Caracas on living and working in Canada. "A plan for your life," read an advertisement for the seminars.

A Canadian embassy spokesman said oil companies are the main recruiters on the ground in Caracas. Canada is developing extra-heavy oil reserves that are comparable to those in Venezuela's Orinoco river basin, providing a ready job market for current and former staffers at Venezuela's state oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela SA, or PdVSA. The number of work visas Canada granted Venezuelans more than doubled last year, to 340.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 16, 2007 8:14 AM
Comments

Spatial mobility is anti-socialist.

Posted by: Lou Gots at February 16, 2007 11:48 AM

Well I guess we should all start buying some them there oil stocks on the Toronto exchange before May 1.

Posted by: KRS at February 16, 2007 2:34 PM

Lou:

To the contrary, it annihilates social ties which is what statism requires.

Posted by: oj at February 16, 2007 3:53 PM

Leave before el Presidente closed the border.

Posted by: ic at February 16, 2007 5:59 PM
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