Venezuela Approves Wage Increases, Price Controls

Venezuelan president Jaime Lusinchi approved a general wage increase in the form of bonuses ranging from 20 to 30 pct and a 120-day price freeze on a basket of basic consumer goods. Both measures, which take effect on May 1, were approved by the cabinet. They will be announced to the nation by Lusinchi in a televised address tonight but the text of the decrees was released this afternoon. Businessmen, who met Lusinchi, opposed the pay rise, saying it will fuel inflation.

Sunshine Mining Chief Sees Silver at 9.00 Dlrs

Heightened concern over renewed inflation is feeding the rally in silver and the upward move could drive the inflation hedge metal this year to as much as 9.00 dlrs per troy ounce, Mike Boswell chairman of Sunshine Mining Co told Reuters in an interview. “The anticipated higher inflation is being manifested in silver rather than in gold which is the traditional choice of inflation hedgers,” said Boswell. The strength could put silver in a range of “8.

Taiwan Proposes to Invest one Billion Dlrs in U.S.

Taiwan’s Economic Ministry has approved an ambitious proposal calling for a one billion U.S. Dollar investment by private and public companies in the United States over the next five years, ministry officials said. John Ni, director of the Ministry’s Industrial Development and Investment Centre (IDIC), said under the IDIC proposal, Taiwanese firms would be encouraged to set up factories and invest in property and securities markets in the U.S.. Taiwan’s 1986 investment in the U.

USDA Announces Export Bonus Wheat to Algeria

The U.S. Agriculture Department announced it accepted three bids from two exporters for export bonuses to cover sales of 54,000 tonnes of durum wheat to Algeria. USDA said the bonuses awarded were 42.45 dlrs per tonne, to be paid in the form of commodities from CCC inventory. The bonus awards were made to Cam USA Inc (36,000 tonnes) and Corprostate Inc (18,000 tonnes). Shipment is scheduled for June 1-30, 1987.

Panama Canal Unaffected by Political Protest

The Panama Canal, one of the world’s key maritime crossroads, has not been affected by the recent anti-government protests here, a spokesman for the U.S.-government agency that operates the waterway said. “Everything’s normal here. It (the canal) is running efficiently and everything is going well,” said Anel Beliz, spokesman for the Panama Canal Commission. The commission was monitoring the situation and contingencies exist to ensure continued operation, he said. Unconfirmed reports said several shipping lines had ordered their vessels away from Panama until further notice.

Adb Meeting Ends, Marked by Criticism

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) today wound up a three-day meeting which was marked by criticism of the ADB from both rich and poor member nations. In speech after speech, the 20-year-old ADB was charged either with not doing enough to help countries in the region, or with funding projects which were not worthwhile. The attacks often, but not always, broke down along developed and developing country lines. The former, which provide the ADB with money, generally emphasized the need for quality projects.

EC Publishes List of U.S. Barriers to Free Trade

The European Community responded to widespread U.S. criticism of its trade policies by publishing an extensive list of U.S. actions which pose obstacles to EC exports. A spokeswoman for the EC Commission said the detailed 25-page report of alleged malpractices was in response to a similar document issued by U.S. Administration officials in November, and updated a previous EC list. EC External Trade Relations Commissioner Willy De Clercq said its object was to show such actions were not solely taken by trading partners of the U.

Yeutter Sees Possible European, Japan Recession

U.S. Trade Representative Clayton Yeutter said a possible recession in western Europe or Japan was possible as a result of the U.S. dollar’s decline and the resulting drop in the U.S. trade deficit. Yeutter told the Senate Finance Committee, “They certainly have the macroeconomic policy tools to adjust” to the U.S. reduction in imports. Asked if the U.S. trade deficit was preventing them from going into a recession, Yeutter replied that result was “certainly possible” and was the reason why they should adjust their monetary, fiscal and tax policies.

Royal Bank Sees Canadian Economy Easing

Canadian gross domestic product should grow at a real rate of 3.3 pct this year before easing to a 3.0 pct growth rate next year when U.S. economic growth is expected to decline, Royal Bank of Canada, Canada’s largest bank, said in its monthly economic forecast. The forecast is from fourth quarter to fourth quarter. The bank did not give Canada’s real rate of growth for 1986. The bank said it expects the Canadian dollar to remain at the 75 U.

German Sugar Beet Plantings Most Advanced in South

Sugar beet plantings are almost complete in southern West Germany but are lagging behind in other regions, trade sources said. In the west of the country, about 60 pct of the plantings were completed, while in the north only 40 pct of the sugar beet area has been sown, they said. The weather is forecast to stay mild in northern West Germany in the coming days and more planting progress is expected there, they said.