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France–Venezuela relations


France–Venezuela relations

France-Venezuela relations
Map indicating locations of France and Venezuela



France–Venezuela relations are foreign relations between France and Venezuela. France has an embassy in Caracas and Venezuela has an embassy in Paris.


  • History 1
  • State visits 2
  • Agreements 3
  • French investment 4
    • Relation with Carlos the Jackal 4.1
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7


During the 1992 Venezuelan coup d'état attempts, the French Government "immediately signalled its refusal to accept a breakdown in institutional legitimacy.[1]

State visits

President Hugo Chávez met French President Jacques Chirac on three occasions in October 2002, March 2005 and October 2005.[1][2]

In 2007, Chávez visited French President Nicolas Sarkozy to discuss the situation of hostage Ingrid Betancourt held in Colombia.[3][4]

In September 2008, Chávez again visited Sarkozy and Chávez said he sought aid from "friendly" countries like France, in exchange for "Venezuelan energy".[5]


In October 2008, the Venezuelan and French Foreign Ministers signed 10 agreements on cooperation including bilateral cooperation on energy, military, telecommunications, tourism and fight against drug trafficking.[6]

French investment

In 2000, French company Pechiney signed an agreement with the Venezuela government to invest USD 260 million over three years to expand state-owned bauxite and alumina.[7]

As of 2005, French oil company Total SA was the largest foreign investor in Venezuela.[8] In 2005, Total commenced negotiations with the Venezuelan Government over a possible USD 5 billion project to develop heavy oil in eastern Venezuela.[9] In April 2006, the Venezuelan government seized control of foreign owned oil fields including those operated by Total.[10]

Relation with Carlos the Jackal

Chávez is known to have had a sporadic correspondence with convicted terrorist Carlos the Jackal from the latter's prison cell in France. Chávez replied, with a letter in which he addresses Carlos as a "distinguished compatriot".[11][12][13] On June 1, 2006, Chávez referred to him as his "good friend" during a meeting of OPEC countries held in Caracas.[14]

On 20 November 2009, Chávez publicly defended Carlos, saying that "he is wrongly considered to be a bad guy and is to be praised as a key revolutionary fighter, instead."[15]

France summoned the Venezuelan ambassador and demanded an explanation. Chávez, however, declined to retract his comments.[16]

See also


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Chavez visit to France fuels hope about hostage". USA Today. 2007-11-20. Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  4. ^ Barchfield, Jenny. "Chavez Visits Paris for Hostage Talks". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  5. ^ "Chavez backs Sarkozy's call for financial summit". The Times Of India. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ . 2000-12-06 
  8. ^ "Total seeks to resolve differences with Venezuela's Chavez over oil contracts". Forbes. 2005-10-20. 
  9. ^ Luhnow, David; Millard, Peter (2005-02-14). "Venezuelan Oil Deals Ease Tensions". The Wall Street Journal. 
  10. ^ "Venezuela's oil field seizures from European companies causes jitters about country's outlook". The America's Intelligence Wire. 2006-04-04. 
  11. ^ Carta de Hugo Chávez a Ilich Ramírez Sánchez alias «El Chacal».
  12. ^ Blanco y Negro - secundaria.
  13. ^ La familia de Carlos ``El Chacal'' espera más gestos de Chávez.
  14. ^ Nacional y Política -
  15. ^ [1] "Venezuela's Hugo Chavez defends 'Carlos the Jackal",] BBC News, 21 November 2009
  16. ^ "Carlos the Jackal was 'revolutionary': Chavez".  

External links

  • French Ministry of Foreign Relations about relations with Venezuela
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