Venezuela’s economy has entered recession, after contracting for the third consecutive quarter of the year.
The Central Bank announced that the economy had shrunk by 2.3% in Q3 2014.
President Nicolas Maduro said the Venezuelan economy had been affected by political instability and dropping oil prices in international markets.
He accused the US of flooding the markets with oil as part of an economic war against Russia.
The central bank also said inflation had reached 63.6% in the 12 months to November, one of the highest rates in the world.
Nicolas Maduro announced a number of measures to boost economic growth and control inflation, including reforms to Venezuela’s currency control system.
Nicolas Maduro said speculation had affected inflation but he also praised government efforts to rein in the increases.
He said Venezuela was suffering the consequences of an economic war launched by US President Barack Obama “to destroy” the oil producers’ cartel, OPEC.
“It is a two-year plan, which is affecting the prices of commodities and many developing economies,” Nicolas Maduro said.
“The US wants to impose a unipolar world controlled from Washington. That is madness.”
The crisis offered a “great opportunity for Venezuela to change its economic model,” the president added.
Venezuela has the world’s largest proven oil reserves, with its economy highly dependent on oil exports.
The Venezuelan opposition blames the socialist policies of Nicolas Maduro and his late predecessor, Hugo Chavez, for a shortage of many staples, such as corn oil and milk, amid a serious economic crisis.
Venezuela’s economy shrank by 4.8% and 4.9% respectively in Q1 and Q2 2014.