Fuel Trafficking Decreases 53% in Venezuela

Venezuela's vice-president Jorge Arreaza said on Saturday that fuel trafficking in the country decreased 53 percent during 2014. Government said the decrease is result of program “Zero trafficking”.

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Venezuela's Vice-President Jorge Arreza (Photo: Reuters)
Venezuela's Vice-President Jorge Arreza (Photo: Reuters)

Venezuela's vice-president Jorge Arreaza said on Saturday that fuel trafficking in the country decreased 53 percent during 2014.

Government said the decrease is result of program “Zero trafficking”.

The vice-president also announced the seizure of 140,000 liters of fuel from a private oil company boat in the north-west state of Falcon. The boat was carrying 20,000 liters more than its official fuel capacity, which were going to be sold outside of Venezuela.

“Fuel trafficking has been reduced by 53 percent. We have saved millions and millions of liters of fuel,” said Arreaza.

On Aug. 11, the Venezuelan government began a program to fight against the fuel and food trafficking from Venezuela to other countries. The government stated that the smuggling is the main reason of Venezuela's shortage.

The program focuses on the strengthened security on the border between Colombia and Venezuela, one of the main routes for the smugglers.

Arreaza said that Venezuela needs better coordination of its Ministries to fight against smugglers, and that the government will fine any private or state-owned company that helps the traffickers.

On Friday, President Nicolas Maduro ordered an investigation into Venezuela's national fuel supply network.

Maduro said that he had strong evidence that criminal groups are working with some state-owned companies.

According to government figures, some 100,00 barrels of fuel a day are taken out illegally from the country.