• Venezuela receives $5B funding from China

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    CARACAS: Cash-strapped Venezuela has received $5 billion in financing from China, President Nicolas Maduro announced on Sunday as his country struggles with an economic crisis.

    “We just received $5 billion more in financing for development,” Maduro said in a radio and television address.

    He did not provide further details on the loan from China, a major political and economic ally of Venezuela.

    Plummeting global oil prices have caused huge distress for Venezuela, a member of Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries that relies heavily on its oil revenue to keep its lumbering command economy afloat.

    Inflation in 2014 reached 68.5 percent in the South American country and many basic goods are in short supply.

    China is Venezuela’s largest investor and the second-largest purchaser of its oil. It has been a key ally of Venezuela since Maduro’s predecessor Hugo Chavez came to power in 1999.

    In January, Maduro visited Beijing and said China had agreed to more than $20 billion in investments in Venezuela.

    Maduro did not say if the financing announced Sunday was part of that amount.

    AFP

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