The Associated Press
August 17, 2008
CARACAS, Venezuela -- Venezuela's government said Sunday that it will ship gasoline to neighboring Colombia in an attempt to slow cross-border smuggling of cheap Venezuelan fuel.
Venezuela's Oil Ministry plans to send Colombia's Norte de Santander state at least 50,000 barrels (8 million liters) of oil a month starting Thursday and could double that supply, the state-run Bolivarian News Agency reported Sunday.
It was not immediately clear how much the gasoline would sell for in Colombia.
A top oil exporter, Venezuela sells subsidized gasoline at home for as little as $0.12 a gallon (US$0.03 a liter). That has encouraged smugglers to sneak cheap fuel across borders into Colombia and other nearby nations.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe mended relations in a July meeting after months of sniping, and have since pledged joint projects including a railway linking the neighboring countries.