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Works begins on joint Chinese-Venezuelan oil refinery in southern China

CARACAS, Venezuela - Venezuela and China are teaming up to build an oil refinery in southern China.

Venezuelan Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez attended a ceremony on Friday marking the start of construction in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong. The refinery is to be completed in 2015 and is to cost $8.3 billion.

Ramirez said the refinery will be able to process up to 400,000 barrels of crude a day, and is the first of three refineries Venezuela plans to help build in China.

China National Petroleum Corp. is partnering with Venezuela's state oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela SA.

Ramirez said in a company statement that Venezuela is currently selling China about 600,000 barrels of oil a day.

China has also agreed to lend Venezuela about $38 billion in exchange for oil shipments.


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