Chavez: Here comes China


Chavez speaks on his favorite subject.


Leo Ramirez

Everybody's favorite president, Hugo Chavez, said that China could surpass the US as Venezuela's number-one trading partner.

There isn't much love lost between Chavez and the US, and vice versa.

For starters, the US likes capitalism, and Chavez likes socialism, which is a dirty word in some parts of America.

He's always coming up with mean things to say about the Yankees. And the US doesn't exactly have a lot of compliments for ol' Hugo.

Yet the US still buys a lot of oil from Venezuela, one of the biggest producers in the world.

But now, Chavez is looking toward China as a major partner, too. Per the AP:

Chavez says trade between the two countries has reached $20 billion this year, up from $600 million just over a decade ago. It is growing at a rate of $2 billion a year. ...

Trade between the United States and Venezuela has reached $33.5 billion so far this year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

That's a boon for Venezuela, which is smart to link its future to such a rising power. And Venezuela isn't going to just cut the US off from its oil, even though Chavez likes to say that. But it's another strong example of Latin America turning away from the US as a top ally.

And yet another example of what happens when you get absorbed elsewhere.