CARACAS (AFP) — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced the government would nationalize several iron and steel companies to pave way for a large "socialist" state-run enterprise.
"There is nothing to discuss. We've been on this for a long time," Chavez said in a televised address Thursday, ordering the beginning of "a process of nationalization to create an industrial complex."
Chavez, who has nationalized many of the mineral-rich country's biggest industries, named Matesi, Consigua, Ceramicas Carabobo and Tavsa, which produces seamless steel
pipes for the oil industry.
Also affected were Orinoco Iron and Venprecar, subsidiaries of Venezuelan-owned International Briquettes Holding (IBH), which exports iron briquettes.
The announcement is the start of a "transition" so that these companies can become the "solid platform of socialism," he said.