Communal Banks

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"the Venezuelan government of Hugo Chavez has begun providing large grants to 3,500 ‘communal banks' (Pearson 2008):

Communal banks are social organisations that administer the financial and non-financial resources of the communal councils, the organising mechanism of communities. Through the communal banks, organised communities can finance social projects, assist members in cases of emergency, and make social investments. In the 2009 budget, Chavez explained, US$ 1.6 billion has been assigned to the communal banks. Chavez noted the irony that while large, small and medium sized banks are collapsing around the world as a result of the financial crisis, Venezuela is ‘giving birth to thousands of banks that are banks of the people, the communal banks, the banks for popular power...and [this] popular power is vital for the future of the this...can't fail.'... Chavez is also encouraging the communal councils and the national government bodies to create networks of social distribution of the products that are made in the socialist companies and collectives. The idea of such a network would be to counteract the capitalist networks of production, which have been generating speculation in the price of products." (