TOKYO - Venezuela has secured $4 billion funds from China to be used for oil field development, Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez said Thursday.
The minister didn't give details of the new funding from China, which will add to at least $35 billion of credit Beijing has provided to Venezuela, mostly in return for future oil deliveries.
The South American country's state energy company Petroleos de Venezuela SA, or PDVSA, said Wednesday that Venezuela was negotiating a $4 billion credit line from Export-Import Bank of China.
Mr. Ramirez was speaking in Tokyo following a trip to Beijing for talks with Exim Bank President Li Ruogu and other officials.
Venezuela has also secured a number of financing agreements with its partners, ranging from Russia's Rosneft to U.S. oil major Chevron Corp., over the past few weeks as it looks for funding for its plans to rapidly boost oil production.
The new China funds add to a separate $4 billion loan that PDVSA will receive from the Chinese government to boost oil production at Petrolera Sinovensa, a joint venture in Venezuela's between PDVSA and China National Petroleum Corp. in Venezuela's rich Orinoco heavy oil belt.
"We plan to increase output to 4 million barrels a day by 2014 and 6 million barrels a day by 2016. Only Asia can absorb these increases," Mr. Ramirez told reporters.
Venezuela currently produces about 3 million barrels a day of crude oil.
Mr. Ramirez met Japanese industry minister Toshimitsu Motegi and was later due to meet officials of Inpex Corp. and state-funded Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp.
Kejal Vyas in Caracas contributed to this article.
Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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