The minimum wage in Venezuela is being pushed up by 50 per cent in a desperate attempt by the government to mitigate against runaway inflation.

President Maduro said that the rise would protect incomes; the IMF predicts that inflation will rise by a further 1,600 per cent this year. In November alone the bolivar lost more than half its value as the currency continued its freefall.

It is the fifth time in a year that the monthly minimum wage has been increased and the new rises will see workers take home a guaranteed 40,000 bolivars per month, which is about £49.

“In times of economic war and mafia attacks . . . we must protect employment and workers’ income,” President Maduro said on his weekly television and radio…

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