Caracas, April 20, 2015 (venezuelanalysis.com) – Venezuela has obtained a further $5 billion loan from China to finance new development projects, announced President Nicolas Maduro on Sunday.
“With our alliance with China, we have just received $5 billion more to finance development,” confirmed the socialist leader in a televised address on Sunday.
While specific details are forthcoming, the loan will reportedly be repaid with Venezuelan oil exports to its Asian trading partner, which currently amount to around 640,000 barrels daily and are expected to rise to approximately one million per day.
The loan marks a further strengthening of the strategic alliance between the two nations that has blossomed over the past eight years, with China investing in over 200 development ventures across Venezuela.
This past January, President Maduro traveled to Beijing as part of his international tour, successfully securing $20 billion in Chinese investment in the areas of production, infrastructure, and energy.
As Venezuela’s principal creditor, China has provided the Bolivarian nation with $46 billion in loans since 2007, of which $24 billion have already been repaid.
The most recent loans undoubtedly come as a relief to a Venezuelan economy hard hit by both economic war and collapsing oil prices that have chipped away at the country’s foreign currency reserves.
With the aid of Chinese investment, Venezuela has sought to diversify its economy, reducing its dependence on oil exports by developing its productive sector.
Last month, the Venezuelan government unveiled its plan for the establishment of Chinese-inspired Special Economic Zones (SEZs) aimed at attracting international and domestic investment in export-based production as well as infrastructure development, especially in the areas of telecommunications, electricity, and water and land transport.