On September 26, Igor Sechin, President and Chairman of the Management Board at Rosneft, arrived in Venezuela and held talks with Rafael Ramirez, Venezuelan Oil Minister and President of PDVSA, the Venezuelan state oil and gas company. The two discussed bilateral cooperation in the energy sector.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Igor Sechin also took part in the opening of the first houses in a new housing complex in Fuerte Tiuna that has been built under a state programme to improve housing conditions for Venezuelans. Under a mandate from the Russian government, the Russian Housing Development Foundation has been building approximately 700,000 square metres of housing and infrastructure for Venezuelans since 2011. 4,500 people and 190 units of machinery are currently working on the project. Russian specialists are incorporating new technologies in this large-scale construction project, including earthquake-resistant structures, complex facades, light inter-floor slabs and modern ventilation systems.
Construction work is running ahead of schedule. By July 2013, in addition to the residential buildings, there are plans to open a hospital, schools and two nursery schools. Hugo Chavez is personally overseeing the construction programme.
Contracts and agreements signed between the Russian Housing Development Foundation and the Venezuelan Energy and Oil Ministry envisage the construction of 30,000 apartments and the creation of two joint ventures to build factories to produce construction materials and for quarrying. New accommodation is being built in Caracas and Cumana so that residents can relocate from dilapidated housing.