CARICOM Member Countries Evaluate Relaunch of Petro Caribe in Venezuela
Caricom Commits to Relaunch of PetroCaribe After South American Meetup
Caribbean Community (Caricom) officials met on January 19 in South America to assess the guidelines for the relaunch of the PetroCaribe initiative, the Foreign Ministry reported in a statement. The meeting aimed to assess the potential for cooperation on issues such as regional connectivity, energy and food security.
PetroCaribe is an oil acquisition agreement between Venezuela and Caribbean nations established in 2005 under Hugo Chávez’ presidency. The program was suspended in 2019 due to US sanctions on Venezuela and the decrease in oil production in the South American country. However, many Caribbean countries have reported that Venezuela has been offering new oil deals.
On December 13, the Belize government negotiated a debt reduction of over $250 million with Venezuela under PetroCaribe. Prime Minister John Briceño has told Parliament that this will result in a 6-7% decrease of debt to gross domestic product ratio.
The Ministers present also discussed the incentives for cooperation initiatives. Joining them was the Bank of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) to explore potential projects.
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