Venezuela and neighbouring countries

Latin America

The coastal state of Venezuela extends almost 5'000 meters into the Andes. The country is home to a great variety of species and biodiversity and has one of the largest proven oil reserves. However, years of economic mismanagement since 2015 have led to a humanitarian and political crisis. Today, 80 per cent of the population are poor and can barely meet their basic needs. This has led to the greatest wave of migration in Latin America‘s recent history.

© Caritas Switzerland

Millions of Venezuelans continue to flee to the neighbouring countries, which face great challenges in hosting the refugees. Caritas Switzerland supports refugees in Venezuela and in the neighbouring countries of Brazil, Colombia, Peru and Bolivia. In addition to providing emergency aid, Caritas is also committed to fighting poverty in the longer term.

Overview in figures

Sources: Human Development Report, UNESCO, UNFPA (as of 2022)

  • Total population: 29,3 million
  • Prosperity indicator (total 191 states): rank 120
  • Gross National Income per capita: USD 4'811
  • Life expectancy at birth: 71 years
  • Literacy rate (age 15 and over): 97%
  • CO2 emissions per capita: 3 tons

Caritas projects in the region

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Header image: Many people from Venezuela sought refuge in the Brazilian state of Roraima. © Felipe Larozza