Colombia evaluates the import of natural gas and light crude oil from Venezuela to reduce fuel costs.
The Andean nation is also analyzing whether to participate in oil exploration in Venezuela, said the Minister of Mines and Energy of Colombia, Andres Camacho.
“We are exploring the possibility, even, that “Ecopetrol directly explores gas and hydrocarbons in Venezuela”Camacho indicated on Monday in an interview on Blu Radio.
The United States suspends sanctions on Venezuelan oil, gas, gold and bonds
His comments come after the president’s visit on Saturday Gustavo Petro to Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, where Petro said it was “very likely” that Colombia’s state oil company, Ecopetrol SA, would become partner of Petróleos de Venezuela SA in the production of oil and natural gas.
Colombia’s interest would mark a change in Petro’s policy of moving his nation away from fossil fuels. In Colombia, his government has refused to grant new oil exploration licenses and has also opposed new oil exploration contracts abroad.
Last month, The United States lifted some sanctions on oil and gas operations in Venezuela after the Maduro Government and the opposition agreed to work on an agreement to improve electoral conditions.
In August, Camacho said that the country was not considering importing gas from Venezuela. The two countries are linked by a 223 kilometer gas pipeline. which connects the Venezuelan gas fields with northeastern Colombia, although it would require considerable maintenance work to make it work.
Colombia’s natural gas reserves fell by the equivalent of 7.2 years production at the end of last year, the lowest level since at least 2007, according to the National Hydrocarbons Agency. The Andean nation had 2,040 million barrels of proven crude oil reserves, the equivalent of 7.5 years of production.
Translated by Bárbara Briceño.