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Venezuela expands oil shipments to Singapore, China
Updated: 2005-12-25 14:18

CARACAS: Venezuela sent more than 5.35 million barrels of oil to Singapore and China in December in an effort to expand further into Asian markets, Venezuela's state oil company said.

Petroleos de Venezuela S.A., or PDVSA, said it shipped 3.45 million barrels of fuel oil to Singapore and 1.9 million barrels of crude to China in three supertankers on Dec. 12 and 13.

The shipments were "part of a commercial policy of market diversification,'' PDVSA said in a statement.

Venezuela, the world's fifth-largest oil exporter, has sought to reduce its dependency on the United States as the leading buyer of its oil and expand into new markets, particularly in Asia.

Earlier this week, PDVSA director Asdrubal Chavez said crude exports to China reached 140,000 barrels a day at the end of 2005.

Venezuela hopes to more than double that to 300,000 barrels a day.

Venezuela also plans to expand its fleet of oil tankers wants to build pipelines with access to the Pacific Ocean so that it can ship more oil and gas to Asian countries.

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