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MOSCOW, March 6 (Itar-Tass) – The change of power in Venezuela following the death of President Hugo Chavez is unlikely to bring about any radical change in economic relations with Russia, the deputy director of the Latin America Institute under the Russian Academy of Sciences, Nikolai Kalashnikov, has told ITAR-TASS on Wednesday.
He said “Russian projects in Venezuela are being implemented by our public and private companies, which in the first place pursue economic interests, and not political ones, so for that reason Chavez’s death is unlikely to influence economic relations between the two countries.”
About the likely political developments in Venezuela in the near future Kalashnikov said “with a great degree of probability the current vice-president Nicolas Maduro will emerge the winner.”
“At this point there are no reasons to say that Venezuela’s foreign policy will undergo great change after he takes over,” Kalashnikov said.
As Russian Economic Development Ministry has told ITAR-TASS, Russia’s trade with Venezuela in 2012 was up 12.1 percent in contrast to 2011 to reach 1,944.7 million dollars. Russia’s export reached 1,943.9 million dollars (going up 1.1 percent), while import reduced to 0.8 million dollars. Russia’s trade surplus in trade with Venezuela in 2012 stood at 1,943.1 million dollars.