What life is like in rural Venezuela, where ‘money doesn’t buy anything’ – Global News

At the once-busy beach resort of Patanemo, tourism has evaporated over the last two years as Venezuela’s economic crisis has deepened and deteriorating cellphone service left visitors too afraid of robbery to brave the isolated roads.Gone are the vendors who once walked the sands of the crescent-shaped beach hawking bathing suits and empanadas — a traditional savory pastry.READ MORE: UN says ‘staggering’ 4 million people have left Venezuela
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These days, its Caribbean shoreline flanked by forested hills receives a different type of visitor: people who walk 10 minutes from a nearby town carrying rice, plantains or bananas in hopes of exchanging them for the fishermen’s latest catch.With bank notes made useless by hyperinflation, and no easy access to the debit card terminals widely used to conduct transactions in urban areas, residents of Patanemo rely mainly on barter.It is just one of a growing number of rural towns slipping into isolation as Venezuela’s economy implodes amid a long-running political crisis.From the peaks of the Andes to Venezuela’s sweltering southern savannahs, the collapse of basic services including power, telephone and internet has left many towns struggling to survive.The subsistence economy stands in stark contrast to the oil boom years when abundance seeped into the most remote reaches of what was once Latin America’s richest nation.WATCH: Pence commends Canada for stance on Venezuela

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