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Russia’s Gazprom may build a trans-continental pipeline system in Venezuela

Russia’s Gazprom may be recruited to improve gas supplies and build a trans-continental pipeline system in Venezuela.

“We know that Venezuela is interested in engaging Gazprom in this work,” First Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov said in a meeting with Venezuelan Vice President Jorge Rodriguez. “The fuel and energy sector is the most outstanding aspect of trade and economic cooperation between Russia and Venezuela,” Zhukov said. “Our leading companies - Gazprom and LUKoil - are already working in the Venezuelan market successfully. It is quite encouraging that the political dialogue between the two countries is more and more actively backed up by positive dynamics in trade and economic relations,” he said.

According to the Federal Customs Service, bilateral trade turnover in 2006 was $90 million ($77.5 million in 2005). Russia’s imports from Venezuela (alumina, coffee, tobacco, rum) stand at $24.4 million and Russian exports to this Lain American country (mineral fertilizers, machine-tools, machinery, rolled steel, vodka) have reached $65.8 million. Trade turnover between Russia and Venezuela in 2006 was $517 million, including military-technical cooperation. Russia-Venezuela trade turnover grew seven-fold over the past three years, Zhukov earlier, adding that the upward trend was evident this year too.

According to Russian statistics, cited by Zhukov, trade turnover between the two countries stands at $517 million. The share of Russian products with a high degree of industrial products amounts to 70% of exports to Venezuela. Zhukov said Russian-Venezuelan relations were developing against the background of the rapid development of the two economies, which opens up broad prospects both for Russian and Venezuelan businesses.

Rodriguez said at the opening of the Russian-Venezuelan business forum that Russian-Venezuelan relations should have a solid financial base. “It is very important for relations [between the two countries] to have a solid financial base, to deepen and strengthen,” he said. “Our task is to grow together,” the official added.  He also noted that Venezuela “needs Russia’s experience in the development of oil and natural gas fields, geological prospecting and diversification of the economy.” “Further cooperation between Russian and Venezuelan enterprises should be backed by the conclusion of long-term agreements. We want relations between our countries to intensify and Russian enterprises to move deeper into the Venezuelan economy,” the vice president said. He explained that two countries should interact for the implementation of agreements reached during the talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez during his visit to Moscow. (vheadline.com)