Lukashenko: your oil is in Lake Charles


A little nugget in my Inbox courtesy of a reader.

You know how Hugo Chávez is always boasting that he wants to ship oil to other countries, how he wants to find other markets, bla bla bla? That’s the reasoning behind his deal to send oil to Belarus, governed by ally and fellow dictator Aleksandr Lukashenko.

But it’s not all cut and dry. Belarus, you see, is a landlocked country, and getting oil to them from a place as far away as Venezuela is not easy, nor cheap.

Not to worry. Petroleum World is reporting that Venezuela, Belarus, Azerbaijan, and the US have reached a deal. Azerbaijan and Venezuela will swap oil. Venezuela’s sales of oil to Belarus will be supplied by Azerbaijan, via Ukraine. In exchange, US purchases of Azerbaijani oil will be shipped by … Venezuela, of course!

The end result? More Venezuelan oil will end up in the Evil Empire.

Only we’ll call it Azerbaijani oil – just so we can claim we’re “diversifying” our markets.

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  1. That makes sense. It has been done that way for years where cost of transportation is prohibited or impossible, in the case of Belarus.

  2. For months and months Chavistas & Belarussians did try anything, but really anything: they seriously considered sending oil through Estonia, Lithuania and Ukraine (through the Odessa port, the light “Santa Barbara” samples were even transported via train wagons).

    Among other things here they say they also plan to be with that more competitive against the Russian “competiting” oil refineries–planiruet-poluchat–neft–iz-azerbajdzhana-s-marta.html (use Google tools for details)
    They also s ay the deal will start from March.

    Belorussians will still keep getting most of their oil from Russia as Russia accepted to strip duties.
    Take a look at this (English)

    My guess is that Cypriot tankers from the company mentioned there, but with an Azeri flag, will set off from the Land of Grace to the “Evil Empire”.

  3. I think yesterday’s devaluation goes in the opposite direction: It is an attempt to harm the US economy. Since things will be more expensive for Venezuelans, demand will drop, that menas fewer imports from the US and a weakening of the US economy. I think that is Giordani’s plan to hurt the US. So there!

  4. Miguel,

    do you think they are that sick?(rethorical)
    I mean, “hurting” the US at the expense of venezuelan citizens?
    If that’s the real motive,its outrageous,sick and very very anti-pro-humansocialism.
    When will this madness end?2012?who will be the oppo candidate? some guy who isn’t disabled by the time we get there? what if we lose? whats the plan then? wait? We all know it’s beyond regular citizens,350 or 333 is not viable.It’s up to the military and,sadly,the rich powerful class to do something… know….

    By the way, how are you anti-imperialist when you depend on imperial deals?
    The opposition has to start demoralizing propaganda already.So people,after 12 years knows what the revolucion is all about.
    Or else,the country dies.And i don’t get to leave the country,at least not legally like i wanna.

  5. Agreed on the irony front, but I have to applaud these guys for finally coming up with a transaction that actually makes commercial sense. Swaps are a good way to get into a faraway market without actually having to pay prohibitive shipping costs. Of course they could have saved a lot more money if they could have convinced the Indonesians to supply China under a similar swap arrangement, but that would have indeed implied common sense defeating ideological delusion.

    • Jimmie,

      (Long time no see, buddy!)

      Mira, but I think the deal with the Chinese is also – in essence – a swap: isn’t that what the Wikileaks story about the Chinese reselling discounted Venezuelan oil to the US and West Africa is all about? The Chinese buy our oil, sell it, take the money, and buy up cheaper-to-transport Indonesian/Gulf oil. No?

      All this does is underline – for the Nth time – the total hollowness of official discourse about sticking it to the empire by selling Venezuelan oil in “new markets”. But then, that’s a bit of a “Newsflash: Sun Hot!” moment, as far as I’m concerned…

    • Before, we were shipping oil to the US, and getting paid by US customers. Now, we’re shipping oil to the US, and getting “paid” by Belarus. How does that make commercial sense?

    • Juan, perhaps we are getting paid by the Cypriots (the ones mentioned in the article above from Belarus) at a Miami bank after Cypriot tanker arrives to the USA from Venezuela. Of course, I imagine already the article at VTV:
      “Venezuela consigue más independencia al vender petróleo a la hermana nación de Bielorrusia”

      Russians started to pump about 280000 barrels of oil a day to the Middle Kingdom and that is likely to go up and is a deal for 20 years. They got 25 billion dollars loans for that now. In a sense, Russia is doing the Venezuela thing now, only that it is not as ineffective as the civic-military Bolivarian government.,1518,737328,00.html&

  6. una vista alterna de Lukashenko, me llega de un amigo madrileño y aquí va la traducción del bieloruso al español hecha por uno del PC español: el contenido tiene que ver con el crecimiento de la economía bielorusa por 10 años, contra viento y marea, de modo que hasta su mayor crítico y opositor, el FMI (Fondo Monetario Internacional) se asombra, y otros hablan del “milagro bieloruso”. No me interesa el tema sino que recibí este email hoy y me tiene leyendo este artículo: “El fenómeno bielorruso ¿Por qué a Condoleezza Rice no le gustan ni Bielorrusia ni su presidente?”

  7. Let’s see, should I sell my oil to the Evil Empire at $90/barrel or should I stick it to the and make them suffer while they watch me sell it to my new customer – China – at $5/barrel.

  8. juego de cajas chinas para enloquecer a cualquiera (y no me falta mucho después de todo el ron de fin de año en casa de colombianos bailando una vaina africana); uds. de verdad que se traen una peor que el baile con ron en casa de Fernando: ya no sé ni cómo seguirles el paso. Vzla le vende a China que le vende a USA que le vende al… Burundanga le dio a Bernabé, Bernabé le pegó a Burundangaaaa

  9. OT – Does anyone know who sends oil and fuel to Israel so that the Israeli war machine can continue killing innocent Arab children, women and old people in Gaza using weapons outlawed under international law such as phosphorous bombs?


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