(posted May 27, 8:15 a.m.)- Nicaragua is sweetening its relations with Venezuela this week by sending the South American oil-producing nation the first of three shipments totaling 45,000 tons of sugar as part of the food security initiative of the Bolivarian Alliance for our Americas (ALBA).
The first Venezuelan ship sailed from Nicaragua’s Puerto Corinto yesterday and two more ships will come for the remaining cargo this week and next.
Though Nicaragua’s trade with Venezuela has grown exponentially over the past five years, this is the first time it has been done through a state-owned Venezuelan shipping company, Venevega, as opposed to private shipping companies.
“This fills us with satisfaction because it is the first time that Venezuela, with its own ships, is taking export products and we are evaluating the possibility of forming an alliance between this business and Nicaraguan ships to continue working in a coordinated manner for exports, and possibly imports too,” Virgilio Silva, executive president of Nicaragua’s National Port Authority (EPN), told Sandinista media outlets.
Silva announced that Venezuela also exported 980 heads of cattle last week.
Years of price controls, currency controls and inflation have led to shortages of many items, from food to toilet paper, in Venezuela’s oil-rich and import-dependent economy.