Russian media is actively discussing how the country could lose in the event of a change of power in Venezuela. A year ago, debts that Latin American countries were relevant for Belarus, and the topic is also tackled. We decided to conduct an audit and find out what has changed in the economic relations between the two countries over the past year.
According to official statistics, the trade turnover between Belarus and Venezuela to 2017 was small, and in 2018 and completely fell sharply. More precisely, the Belarusian exports. If for 11 months of 2017, the bilateral trade was $ 10.2 million, over the same period last year, 2.1 million dollars (by the way, there was so much for all of 2016). While the supply from Venezuela was stable at around 200 thousand dollars, but the Belarusian exports fell by almost 5 times.
It is worth noting that in October of 2017, the President of Venezuela , Nicolas Maduro, visited Minsk and even agreed with Alexander Lukashenko to make a new step in the development of relations between the two countries. These reports come amid reports of debts of Caracas the Belarusian companies in the amount of several hundred million dollars.
If the debts are extinguished?
In October 2017, the then Minister of architecture and construction of Belarus Anatoly Chernyi said that Venezuela needs of the JSV “belzarubezhstroy” has more than 108 million dollars. In December 2018, the Deputy General Director of “Belzarubezhstroy” Alexander Falevich told Sputnik that thinking through alternative options for the return of money in Belarus, in particular, Venezuela offered to settle the debt for housing in the cryptocurrency El Petro. Over the past year, cash received on account of “Belzarubezhstroy” as payment for work performed on objects, which allowed the Belarusian company to continue to operate in Venezuela. “To date, the debt is finally repaid,” said Filevich, but the amount of the remaining debt did not elaborate. Despite the outstanding debt, Belarus continues to build in Venezuela the housing, although the “Russian and Chinese companies left the market.”
Venezuela also owed and MTZ significant amounts. In this Latin American country in 2012 amid the ensuing friendship of Alexander Lukashenko and Hugo Chavez was established JV “Veneminsk, Tractores” for the Assembly of tractors “Belarus”. During this time in Venezuela was supplied 2906 tractor sets tractor. The amount of supplies along with spare parts were more than 76 million dollars. However, in 2017 includes 8 tractors. A contract was signed for supply of 2000 sets.
Plant “Veneminsk, Tractores”. Photo: bzs.by
According Naviny.by at the end of 2017, the amount of debt Venezuelan companies to MTZ was almost $ 50 million. According to TUT.BY for the time passed much change did not happen.
A similar situation has developed in a joint venture “MAZ VEN C. A.” for the Assembly of trucks. The amount of the debt for supplied kits was about $ 170 million. At the Minsk automobile plant has failed to review.
In Venezuela since 2007 he is a Venezuelan-Belarusian joint venture “Petrolera BeloVenezolana” (share of “Belorusneft” is 40%), which is developing 7 oil and 6 gas fields. For the period from 2008 to 2017, produced more than 9 million tons of oil and 6.8 billion cubic meters of gas. According to TUT.BY in 2018, the positive dynamics of the project were observed.
However, the “Belorusneft” anticipates continued implementation of the project on oil production in Venezuela. “Yes, in 2018, the production volume decreased slightly. For circumstances beyond our control. I hope in the future we together with our JV partners will be able to increase production. Because the Venezuelan project is quite interesting,” said TUT.BY the press service of Belorusneft, but refused to specify the volume of production and financial aspects of the work in Venezuela.
Last year it became known about the debt at $ 4 million Orsha aircraft repair plant for the repair of the helicopters in Venezuela. On OURS failed to comment.
The Belarusian authorities conduct a dialogue with Caracas. The latter contacts were recently. Interestingly, they took place against the background of statements of Alexander Lukashenko about the search for alternative oil supplies. Coincidentally or not, 9-11 January in Venezuela was in charge of energy and industry Deputy Prime Minister Igor Lyashenko. As stated in the press service of the government, he took part in the solemn ceremony of inauguration of the President of Venezuela Nicolas Maduro. On the same day held a “brief meeting” Lyashenko and Maduro.
Igor Lyashenko, during a visit to Venezuela. Photo: belchemoil.by
Belarusian Deputy Prime Minister also held talks with the Vice President of planning of Venezuela, Ricardo Menendez. According to the Embassy of Belarus in Venezuela, during the meeting the parties discussed the potential of Belarusian-Venezuelan cooperation, in particular in the field of oil production and housing construction, touched upon the issues of functioning of the joint Belarusian-Venezuelan enterprises. In addition, the parties discussed the possibility of supplying potash fertilizers from Belarus to Venezuela.
— Debt situation of the Venezuelan companies over the past year has not changed much, said TUT.BY a source familiar with the situation. — We discussed various solutions to the problem. Such exotic, as the calculations for the cryptocurrency, to the ordinary barter transactions. It is clear that with the money from Venezuela is tough. And it is unlikely that the situation will improve in the near future. The country is experiencing an acute crisis. So discuss different options. It is important to have economic effect. Relatively speaking, we could obtain the raw material at a symbolic price (not for free) and recycle in Belarus. Or our traders would have realized it in the world markets. Meanwhile, everyone is watching, what the outcome of the political crisis in Venezuela.
In September 2018 Lukashenko instructed to allocate Venezuela 500 tons of powdered milk free of charge
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