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Monday, April 19, 2021

Venezuela: Qatar to boost food imports, provide cash

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Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, left, with Qatar's Minister of Energy and Industry, Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, left, with Qatar’s Minister of Energy and Industry, Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada.

Qatar has agreed to boost food imports from Venezuela and lend the South American state billions of dollars to help it cope with the fallout of plummeting oil prices, Venezuela’s leader reportedly said.

President Nicolas Maduro was in Doha as part of swing through the region as he tries to convince OPEC nations to cut oil production to boost prices and increase the flow of revenues into government coffers.

While his appeals appear to have fallen on deaf ears in the Gulf, Maduro appears to have significantly expanded the nascent relationship between Qatar and Venezuela and said he left with a promise from the Emir of cash as well as investments in his country’s agriculture sector.

Food security

Shoring up secure sources of food is a high priority for Qatar, which overwhelmingly relies on agricultural imports to feed its growing population.

“Qatar has a special fund to invest in food production,” President Nicolas Maduro said, according to Venezuela’s state news agency. “These countries are in the desert, so they import many foods. We will develop the agricultural sector … We are building (export channels to bring) quality products to this region. (Qatar is) very interested in this.”

In the run-up to the official visit, Venezuelan newspaper El Universal said that country’s embassy in Doha was particularly interested in boosting sales of shrimps, fruits such as mango, rice, cocoa and coffee to Qatar.

The trading relationship between the two countries is currently modest, El Universal reported. Between 2009 and mid-2014, non-energy exports from Venezuela to the Gulf country totalled only US$131,000, while sales from Qatar to the South American nation added up to $3.6 million.

Oil prices

Those trade figures are dwarfed by the size of the financing deal Maduro said he had secured to shore up his country’s public balance sheet, which has been hit hard by the plunging price of oil.

“We’re finalizing a financial alliance with important banks from Qatar that will give us sufficient oxygen to help cover the fall in oil prices and give us the resources we need for the national foreign currency budget,” he told his country’s state broadcaster, Bloomberg reported.

Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Maduro did not provide any additional details. Qatar has not commented on the deal, saying only that two countries showed interest during their meeting in enhancing cooperation in various fields including investment, oil and gas, and agriculture.

During his trip through the region, Maduro has met with officials in fellow OPEC members Iran, Saudi Arabia and Algeria to discuss the oil market and press for output cuts.

The Gulf countries, led by Saudi Arabia, have shown little interest in cutting oil production to raise prices. Late last year, officials from Saudi Arabia blocked calls from poorer OPEC members for the oil exporting organization to reduce output.

Reuters, citing unnamed diplomatic sources, reported that Qatar shares the stance of its Gulf neighbors and expressed concern about prices during its meeting with Venezuelan officials but made no promises or commitments as to what action should be taken.

Qatar derives most of its resource wealth from natural gas, the price of which is tied to oil.

The country’s large financial reserves should help the government shoulder a period of low oil prices. However, authorities will be under pressure to cut costs – likely by delaying or canceling pricey construction projects.

Thoughts?

43 COMMENTS

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Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago

It is still unclear why Saudi Arabia is keen on cutting oil prices to very low levels, but many experts are now saying that whatever Saudi’s motives are, its strategy will more likely backfire and be a huge and costly failure.

Abdulrahman Al-Thani
Abdulrahman Al-Thani
6 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

OPEC (Saudi&friends) stopped oil production a couple of decades ago when oil prices dropped and what happeend was the UK and the Norwegians built their own plants and that ended up cutting OPEC’s market share and losing them money.

What’s going on with oil prices, In earnest, no one knows. The entire issue is nothing but speculation, the only thing we know is that oil prices are artificially inflated and the simplest theory is that given all the new extraction methods and alternative energy coming into the market, oil is dropping down closer to it’s true market value.

Otherwise you can argue about conspiracy theroies about pushing out Iran/Russia, the fracking industry and/or alternative energy but that’s all speculation.

Cerebus
Cerebus
6 years ago

Yes, even the Saudi’s key investor said as much. $100 a barrel oil was not only inflated but also not sustainable, it forces changes in the demand side of the market. The inflation was also a hedge against a week dollar that is now trading at 40% higher marks against all global currencies. It would be expected to see most commodities begin to shrink in value to the true market price. Couple that with the US having turned on its spigots for the first time in decades and you have a price collapse. Saudi could cut production by 1,000,000 barrels a day and it would make no difference, the US, Russia, Iraq, UK, will just keep on pumping and pumping more. The days of OPEC’s power are really over and true market forces will likely be a bigger player in prices going forward. So better to keep pumping while its still at $50. It costs them less than $3 a barrel to pull it out of the ground anyway.

Chilidog
Chilidog
6 years ago

What does Venezuela buy from Qatar that totals $3.6 million? Is that a misprint?

Cerebus
Cerebus
6 years ago
Reply to  Chilidog

Petrochemicals – fertilizer, the downstream products of the O&G industry.

Chilidog
Chilidog
6 years ago
Reply to  Cerebus

OK thanks. Does Qatar have processing capabilities downstream that Venezuela doesn’t? Just curious as it seems that both countries have the same primary natural resource, so it just seems like a large trade imbalance (though definitely not as large as between other countries).

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  Chilidog

Maduro is a thief of votes that as en exbus driver could never think he would reach where he is. So he and his band of corrupted are stealing from the people the natural resources, while Qatar shares it with its own population. That’s the biggest capability and difference.
There is no socialism in Venezuela, only government robbery!

Cerebus
Cerebus
6 years ago
Reply to  Chilidog

Two primary issues. The first is that Chavez nationalized all the petrochem industry, and then killed or ran off the remaining scientists that were not expelled. The facilities are no longer running at optimal and the plants where much of this is done have gone offline. The second issue is that the byproducts and downstream varies from source to source depending on whats in the oil mix.

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago

great relationships for Qatar with:
Maduro also known in the Venezuelan community as MaBurro (burro = donkey) to have continued the ROBOlution (ROBO = steal) to his people

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

I wonder what Qatar wants in return as it will never see the money again. My guess a stake in their O&G industry.

Venezuela is desperate and could collapse into anarchy due to mismanagement

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

NOOOO! properties, mines, islands

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

You watch and see. QP to announce in the next 12 months the building of a large petrochemical plant in Venezuela…….

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

and? it does not matter what they build, the country is the deepest crisis ever….and with oil engineers fleeing the country ….they have plants already, otherwise how could they do it throughout all these decades? You see, nothing will go the people…..

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

I agree the country is a disaster. They should be rich but the people can’t get basic goods. Probably all Americas fault….

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

not at all America’s fault…..when they were closer to America’s there were other problems but never this scarcity! The country produced a lot. The neighboring Colombia was a poorer country. Meanwhile the situation has changed slowly and now faster in lack of everything because their idea of socializing is totally f^&#ed up! No, the fault is of those governing the country. Everyone knows in Latin America and Spain who was really Chavez and who is Maduro, an incompetent criminal. Even language wise he’s Spanish is very very low, can’t speak, very ignorant man

Chilidog
Chilidog
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

They just scrapped huge plans in RLIC

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Chilidog

Very true but this is a strategic investment

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago

Dohanews why did you censur my comment on Venezuela? It is not on Qatar…..you have issues also with Venezuela censorship?

Althani
Althani
6 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

Your rude

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  Althani

really? Why? For telling the truth?

Althani
Althani
6 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

I don’t know why you see it as the truth

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  Althani

ehm, my relatives are from there…..do you know really the country apart from maybe having been a tourist? I had written that Maduro is a poop-face dictator who stole votes, plenty of pics showing burnt boxes of votes and soldiers escorting votes to bury…did I say something different from what most people think?

Althani
Althani
6 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

Hmmm

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago

AHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And Qatar believes fatty Maduro will supply food arriving from Venezuela. Ahahahah!!!

Have you seen what’s going on in Venezuela? Lack of everything!!!
People are in the street protesting day and night for the lack of basic food.

This article will make many, but many Venezuelans here in Doha really really angry and it will be mocked in the Latino community. Maybe DohaNews should have questioned , how can they provide produce if they don’t have it for themselves.

Venezuela concern about oil is that they can’t waste more money on themselves as they have been doing all these years of dictatorship, while the people is getting less and less.
“Maduro said he had secured to shore up his country’s public balance sheet, which has been hit hard by the plunging price of oil.” NO. You don’t know the country obviously.

The situation was already bankrupted before the price of oil per barrel plummeted. No private
companies could continue to make business because they have been expropriating
private poperty and because they have been basically giving barrels of oil forfree to “friend countries”. They have made Venezuela a second Cuba.

Maduro can discuss about oil? He can’t discuss about anything!!!

macaroni
macaroni
6 years ago

If oil prices are falling and will stay that way, and gas prices are related, is Qatar in trouble reasonably soon? Or not? Should I be thinking about moving out of this country?

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  macaroni

Maybe if oil hits $20 and stays there for like 4 or more years .

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  macaroni

No, Qatar has plenty of cash reserves and a small population.

The Reporter
The Reporter
6 years ago

One of those agreements where it’s hard to tell who’s scamming who. Venezuela gets money they will never be able to pay back and Qatar gets the vast produce that Venezuela has ……never yet managed to produce.

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  The Reporter

still with vast produce, there isn’t anymore…here is the 24-hrs news channel showing people lining up for basic products in Caracas, the capital. Then explain me what and how Venezuela will export to Qatar. http://www.noticias24.com/venezuela/noticia/270072/en-fotos-los-venezolanos-siguen-enfrentando-el-reto-de-hacer-colas-en-caracas-para-comprar-alimentos/

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  The Reporter

.

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago

Is it just me or are these two gentlemen eyeing each other’s mustaches … There is more hair there then on my head

SLICK
SLICK
6 years ago

Maduro started his round the world trip with a stop in China, trying to drum up a financial deal with nothing but empty pockets. He was treated like a lap dog in Saudi Arabia, a common begger, begging for crumbs, so he and his crony’s can squirrel away a few peso’s and hit the road once the check clears. SA would have none of that, Iran basically told him, we are with you, but unless you come up with better idea’s than stealing from your people, you’re on your own. So, Qatar was the last stop on the dog and pony show… Qatar will get nothing in exchange for nothing. A pretty good deal in my eyes.

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  SLICK

amen!!! Venezolano?
Maduro is such an ignorant and incapable dumb that he has no ideas! His biggest idea was when he said Chavez came to his dreams once he was dead….

Anon
Anon
6 years ago

Maduro looks a bit like Drax out of Moonraker, but without the full goatee….

greylag
greylag
6 years ago

why is this even news?

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
6 years ago
Reply to  greylag

economic deals between two nations isn’t news? would you prefer another story about traffic being bad?

greylag
greylag
6 years ago

Venezuela is one of the most poorly run socialist countries in the world. It has huge reserves of oil, and yet the population faces shortages of the most basic foods and supplies, i.e., milk, chicken, toilet paper…the list goes on. Chaves managed to ruin the nations oil company, and his successor is just carrying on in his footsteps.
On second thought, I guess this IS big news.

johnny wang
johnny wang
6 years ago

If only Venezuela could work on its development and take care of its own people with all the oil wealth it had instead of trying to impress other nations like Cuba and giving them aid and free oil then the country would have been a much better and prosperous place. The sad thing is their leaders have been busy spreading and supporting revolutions and mis-management of the oil wealth and resources of their country and it is no surprise now that it is turning out to be another country going around with a begging bowl

Althani
Althani
6 years ago

Venezuela is great

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Althani

Well the women are…

Althani
Althani
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Hmm true true..

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  Althani

Venezuela was great, Venezuela would be great without Castro-chavism/Maduro

Althani
Althani
6 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

I agree about that

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