Colombia and Venezuela Opened on Sunday a main bridge It connects the two countries, which have been closed for nearly seven years political tensionsushering in a new era of improved relations under Colombia’s new leftist president.
Germain UmaThe Colombian trade minister said the two countries are “recovering the voice and the ability to speak together in multilateral institutions”.
Delegations led by Uma and the governor of Venezuela’s Chira state, Freddy Bernal, met in the center of “tenditasA bridge for the opening ceremony with balloons in the colors of the flags of each country.
The bridge connecting Chira to the Colombian state of Norte de Santander was completed in 2016, but It never opened due to the political crisis among South American countries.
bridge that It cost over $32 million to buildto ease congestion at the other two bi-national bridges in the region and facilitate trade.
In 2019, the Socialist President of Venezuela Nicolas Maduro More than a dozen shipping containers placed on the bridge have ordered its symbolic closure in protest against the opposition’s attempts to bring humanitarian aid into Venezuela from Colombia.
Diplomatic and commercial relations between Colombia and Venezuela were restored in September after the inauguration Gustavo Petro – Ex-guerrilla – as President of Colombia.
Petro’s predecessor, Even Duque (2018-2022), call Maduro “dictator” It made Colombia one of 50 countries to recognize the opposition leader Juan Guid As interim president of Venezuela, he charged that Maduro’s re-election was fraudulent.
Tienditas was the last remaining crossing linking the two countries to be reopened along their 2,200-kilometre (1,367-mile) border after relations were restored.
The resumption of trade relations began with cross-traffic enabled Simn Bolvar and Francisco de Paula Santander Bridges in September.
From then through November, 385 trucks passed through the bridges, mostly from Colombia to Venezuela carrying products like Medical supplies, optical fibers, textiles, toilet paper and cardboard. Rolled steel, engines and pipes were transported from Venezuela to Colombia.
Between January and October 2022, trade between the two countries totaled US$512 million, up from US$394 million in all of 2021, but still a far cry from the US$7 billion in bilateral trade recorded in 2008.