Venezuela pays USD 1 billion in debt related to Colombian exports
In 2008, bilateral trade hit USD 6 billion
Venezuela paid USD 1 billion in debts with Colombian exporters, and Colombian exports to Venezuela are likely to rise to USD 3 billion by the end of the year, said Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos.
The debt related to Colombian exports to Venezuela totaled USD 1.2 billion, but Santos explained that USD 200 million are still pending "as it has not been proved that Venezuela actually owned such amount of money; we have found fake exports in our records," quoted AP.
"However, the debt has been settled (...) and we have raised exports to Venezuela once again. I believe we will exceed USD 3 billion" in sales to Venezuela, said Santos during an event in Pasto, Colombia.
The trade balance between Venezuela and Colombia amounted to USD 1.68 billion in 2008, bringing trade down 63% from USD 4.61 billion in 2009, as recorded by the Venezuela-Colombia Integration Chamber (Cavecol).
José Vicente Rangel clearly said: "We are not conducting negotiations threatened with a gun in the head." He warned behind closed doors in the midst of the social upheaval occurred during the oil strike in 2002 and 2003. Dissenting Timoteo Zambrano answered back that no other option was available: "The thing is that otherwise, you do not negotiate."