Saturday, May 11, 2013

Petrocaribe has stood the test of time ... ...thanks to the legacy left by Hugo Chávez

Maduro: Petrocaribe has stood the test of time

DURING the 7th PETROCARIBE Summit of Heads of State and Government, held in Caracas after the 9th Ministerial Council, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro said that the organization had stood the test of time, thanks to the legacy left by Hugo Chávez.

The President proposed the idea of designating a number of currencies, such as the SUCRE (the Unitary System of Regional Compensation), or other formulas, to facilitate trade among PETROCARIBE members.

The Summit approved the full membership of Honduras and Guatemala, in line with the goal of strengthening regional integration in the energy sector, according to Prensa Latina. Also agreed upon was the scheduling of a Summit in Nicaragua this coming June 29, on the eve of the organization’s eighth anniversary.

The Summit was preceded by an Energy and Finances Ministerial Council meeting. Venezuelan Minister of Oil and Mining, Rafael Ramírez, reported that the necessary conditions were in place for the functioning of the PETROCARIBE Economic Zone, another tool to promote ongoing sustainable, harmonious development in the region.

PETROCARIBE’s energy agreement, with 18 countries participating, has facilitated social progress, going beyond the supplying of oil on the basis of flexible financial terms. For example, its ALBA-Caribe Fund has provided more than $179 million for the execution of 85 projects in 12 nations. Through this fund, finances have been made available to advance access to healthcare, education and housing, as well as promoting economic development.

PETROCARIBE was founded in 2005 and includes Antigua & Barbuda, the Bahamas, Belize, Cuba, Dominica, the Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua, St Kitts & Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent & the Grenadines, Suriname and Venezuela.

Leaders attending the 7th PETROCARIBE Summit paid tribute to Chávez, visiting the Montaña Garrison, on the two month anniversary of his death.


The creation of PETROCARIBE represents an integrationist response to mitigate the asymmetry generated by neocolonialism in the Caribbean, said Ricardo Cabrisas, Vice President of Cuba’s Council of Ministers, in his remarks to the Summit, according to PL.

Under the leadership of Chávez, PETROCARIBE was an "original and audacious idea" which, from the beginning, sought to go beyond merely distributing oil, to promote collaborative energy policies.

According to Cabrisas, Chávez foresaw a comprehensive project, which would support cooperation in programs of social impact, in addition to facilitating access to oil supplies.

Cabrisas further commented, "It is our responsibility to guarantee the continuity of this collaboration between sister peoples facing the crisis of the world economy, of energy, food, the environment and ideas."

May 09, 2013