Tags: venezuela | two-day | work | week

Venezuela Two-Day Work Week to Darken Government Offices

Image: Venezuela Two-Day Work Week to Darken Government Offices

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. (Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 28 Apr 2016 06:56 AM

Venezuela installed a two-day work week for government employees to help save electricity because a drought is draining the nation's power, Bloomberg reported.

President Nicolas Maduro said in his weekly broadcast that the reduced work week will last at least two weeks and help save energy. Along with government offices being closed on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, schools will also close on Friday starting this week.

Most of Venezuela's 2.8 million state employees were already off on Fridays from April and May in hopes of slashing electricity consumption, reported Reuters. Maduro said salaries would still be paid for the missed days despite the shortened work week.

"The public sector will work Monday and Tuesday while we go through these critical and extreme weeks where we are doing everything to save Guri (Dam)," Maduro said, referring to the country's hydroelectric dam.

The Guri Dam is one of the largest hydroelectric power plants in the world, sitting along the Caroni River in Venezuela, noted Britannica.com. The dam, completed in 1986, produces 10,200 megawatts of energy at its height.

Because of a drought, water levels have dropped at the dam to critical levels, Maduro said, going from 20 centimeters to 10, according to Reuters.

"The Guri has virtually become a desert," Maduro said. "With all these measures, we are going to save it."

CNN said the work stoppage is the latest problem plaguing Venezuela, which has been mired in political infighting, food and medical shortages, and an economic crisis along with dealing with the Zika virus.

The Venezuelan government also started a schedule of rolling blackouts in much of the country.

Edward Glossop, an emerging markets economist at the research firm Capital Economics, told CNN that the current electricity crisis could be one of the things that Maduro may not be able to overcome politically.

"The power crisis is likely to hit Mr. Maduro's popularity and this could ultimately prove to be his undoing." 

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Venezuela installed a two-day work week for government employees to help save electricity because a drought is draining the nation's power.
venezuela, two-day, work, week
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2016-56-28
Thursday, 28 Apr 2016 06:56 AM
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