Venezuela, Belarus Sign Oil Deal

Minsk, Belarus (AHN) - Venezuela has pledged to provide uninterrupted oil supplies to Belarus for next 200 years. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez made the announcement after his three-hour talks with Belarussian leader Alexander Lukashenko.

Talking to reporters after the summit, Chavez said that the Belarus refineries would not lack petroleum for the next two centuries and added that he knew the needs of the former Soviet republic. "The Venezuelan people stand with Belarus like it is their homeland, and vice-versa," the left-wing firebrand said.

Anti-U.S. Chavez said, "We are comrades, together we are building a multi-polar world, which constitutes an alternative to imperialism." Lukashenko appreciated the healthy relations between the two nations. "We will do so much for Venezuela that you will never regret having relations with us," Lukashenko promised.

The Belarussian leader also agreed to purchase 30 million tons of petrol from next year until 2013.

In March, the two leaders had reached a deal on the supply of 80,000 barrels of oil per day. The accord was an attempt to boost industrial and commercial ties between the two nations. In return, Belarus has offered Venezuela to exploit its technical knowledge in arms manufacturing.

Chavez' visit came at a time when the relations between Minsk and Moscow were at all-time low. Russia has previously hinted that it will not back Lukashenko as the country's president in the December elections when he will contest for his fourth presidential term.

The relations strained between the two former Soviet nations due to a dispute over gas payments after which Russia cut Belarus' gas supplies in June this year.


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