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Venezuela To Sell Heavy Crude To Belarus

Venezuelan Presidente Hugo Chavez (left) and visiting Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenko in Caracas on March 15.
President Hugo Chavez says Venezuela plans to sell 80,000 barrels of heavy crude oil a day to Belarus, beginning on May 1.

Chavez called the agreement an important step in strengthening ties with the government of visiting Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka.

In Venezuela, Lukashenka said plans call for that country's crude to be refined in Belarus and sold to other European nations.

Financial details of the plan were not immediately available.

Lukashenka continues his visit to Venezuela today.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, is expected to open a working visit to Belarus today to take part in a regular session of the Council Of Ministers of the Russia-Belarus Union State in the city of Brest.

compiled from agency reports