Venezuela's Ministry of Energy and Petroleum managed the funds of
"The Venezuelan revolution would not exist without the Cuban
revolution," concluded Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on December 12,
2009 at the end of the Tenth Cuba-Venezuela Joint Committee held in Havana.
The rendezvous featuring President Chávez and his Cuban counterpart Raúl
Castro wrapped up 285 bilateral projects in a wide range of areas,
namely: health, education, sports, culture, energy, agriculture,
information technology, communications, pharmaceuticals, mining, iron
and steel industry and sugar mills, as reported by state-run Radio
Nacional de Venezuela on that occasion.
To undertake all these plans, the National Development Fund (Fonden)
spent last year USD 1.36 billion. The amount is contained in a report
forwarded by the Ministry of Planning and Finances to Deputy Carlos
Ramos (opposition Un Nuevo Tiempo, UNT, party for Mérida state).
Previously, the member of the National Assembly (AN) Comptrollership
Committee queried the ministry led by Jorge Giordani about how much
money Fonden managed in 2010.
In his reply to the opposition parliamentarian, Finance Minister
Giordani neither specified nor elaborated on the programs.
Siblings they are
Minister Giordani answered to Ramos that the fund disbursed USD 9.62
billion last year for 140 projects. Out of this amount, the Ministry of
Energy and Petroleum received USD 1.69 billion for the implementation of
cooperation plans along with Castro's government.
With the aim of implementing "120 projects agreed at the Sixth Meeting
of the Cuba-Venezuela Joint Committee," Fonden spent USD 8,085,222.88.
The budget of this program amounts to USD 519,246,386.64, out of which
USD 481,230,574.81has been expended.
For the "projects of the Seventh Cuba-Venezuela Joint Committee" Fonden
allocated USD 57,024,461.11 in 2010. That committee countersigned 355
bilateral plans. The estimated amount to attain the goal was USD 1.13
billion. Until last year, Fonden had covered USD 1 billion of the set goal.
For the "projects of the Eighth Cuba-Venezuela Joint Committee,"
President Chávez endorsed USD 7,057,119.28 from Fonden. The Venezuelan
government has granted for these programs the amount of USD
898,190,395.40. Another USD 4,069,511.58 is pending.
In 2010, the "projects of the Ninth Cuba-Venezuela Joint Committee"
expended USD 263,475,067.42. Such plans exact USD 1.19 billion. To date,
Fonden has allocated for such purpose USD 1.09 billion.
The projects under the Tenth Cuba-Venezuela Joint Committee account for
the thickest budget -USD 2.30 billion. In this regard, Fonden has
already placed USD 1.57 billion.
All sorts of things
The "Joint Committee is a tool for compliance and follow-up of foreseen
cooperation actions" under the Comprehensive Covenant on Cuba-Venezuela
Cooperation, in accordance with article 5 of the legal instrument.
Thanks to the deal, the Cuban and Venezuelan revolutions carry out joint
works in the fields of sugar mills, tourism, agriculture, food,
education, transportation, sports and so on.
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