LatinNews Daily - 26 September 2022

In brief: Major Venezuelan fertiliser shipment arrives in Colombia

* A cargo ship carrying 8,000 tonnes of urea from Venezuela has arrived in the Colombian port city of Barranquilla (Atlántico department), in the clearest sign to date of how the restoration of diplomatic ties between the two countries on 12 August is expected to enhance bilateral trade. Colombia’s ambassador in Venezuela, Armando Benedetti, said that the shipment would save Colombian small-scale farmers US$100 per tonne of fertiliser, the price of which has rocketed following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The Venezuelan delivery was shipped to Monómeros, a Venezuelan state-owned petrochemicals company based in Barranquilla which for years has been the subject of a fierce dispute between President Nicolás Maduro’s administration in Venezuela and the opposition, led by Juan Guaidó. Colombia’s new President Gustavo Petro, who is overseeing a rapid rapprochement with Venezuela, recently handed control of Monómeros to a board appointed by Maduro, after three years in which the company was controlled by a Guaidó-appointed board under Petro’s predecessor, Iván Duque (2018-2022). Bilateral trade will receive a further boost following the reopening of the 2,200km Venezuela-Colombia border today (26 September).

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