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Latin American Oil to China and not to the United States

Venezuela Oil field

Venezuela oil field. China's increasingly tapping Latin America for natural resources that were historically available primarily to the United States.

After hundreds of billions of dollars of oil and gas deals around the world over the last few years, pointedly uncontested by the United States, China is not wasting any time in filling holes left by long detached American diplomacy in Latin America. China has comfortably spread its cash in the region, especially to secure oil in countries eager to break past US dominance, namely Venezuela. And now, in a potential coup de grace, Beijing appears to have found an alternative to the Panama Canal to ship all that crude, a solution that involves Colombia, Washington’s most important regional political and military ally. As it is now Venezuelan crude oil is not very economically attractive to China, with large tankers, incapable to use the Panama Canal, having to circumnavigate Latin America.

It could be that Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, a savvy negotiator, is using these talks to pressure the US Congress into approving a free trade agreement (FTA) with Colombia that has been frozen ever since its signing late in 2006.

From the Energy Tribune

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