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Maduro in T&T on Tuesday for energy talks

Sunday, February 22, 2015
Nicolás Maduro

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro is expected to arrive in T&T this Tuesday to hold high-level bilateral talks with Energy Minister Kevin Ramnarine. The Sunday Guardian understands that Maduro is expected to arrive Tuesday morning at Piarco where he will be escorted to the Diplomatic Centre for an 11 am meeting with Ramnarine and members of Government. 

The two men will be hammering out a bilateral energy agreement when they meet. He is expected to sign off on the agreement. It is expected that the future of the Petrocaribe initiative will also be high on the agenda when Maduro and Ramnarine meet on Tuesday. The Sunday Guardian was informed that Venezuela’s energy minister Rafael Ramírez arrived in Trinidad on Friday in preparation for Maduro’s visit. 

Maduro is expected to leave T&T on Tuesday evening. Calls to Ramnarine’s cellphone went unanswered yesterday. He also did not respond to text messages asking about Maduro’s planned visit. Calls to Communications Minister Vasant Bharath’s cellphone also went unanswered. Yesterday, Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and the Economy Rudranath Indarsingh told the Sunday Guardian the media would be given details on Maduro’s visit should he arrive on Tuesday. 

Who is Nicolás Maduro?
Nicolás Maduro Moros, a former bus driver, assumed the powers and responsibilities of Venezuela’s President following the death of Hugo Chavez in 2013. Maduro had previously held the Minister of Foreign Affairs portfolio from 2006 to 2013 and was vice president of Venezuela from 2012 to 2013 under Chavez’s tenure.

After Chavez's death was announced on March 5, 2013, a special election was held on April 14, 2013, to elect a new president. Maduro won by a 1.5 per cent margin. His elevation to the presidency was rife with controversy and was greeted with widespread rioting in Venezuela.