He pointed out that they would forward a strategy to strengthen the
productive capacity of the mining activity. As for the electricity sector,
he informed that the budget includes a 1 billion U$ investment in projects
that are already under way and that will continue next year.
He said that no investments had been made in the electricity sector for a
long time and that as a consequence, the electric network, as well as the
distribution of electric energy; had deteriorated.

He also informed that the MEM would continue to work on the social
orientation of the Venezuelan state owned oil company Petróleos de Venezuela
(Pdvsa), in order for it to play an important role in the consolidation of
the country.

According to Ortegano, with the budget approved in the National Assembly,
the plans and projects for 2005 are guaranteed.

For his part, the vice-minister Energy and Mining, Nery Villalobos said that
among the MEM’s projects, is the installation of a hydroelectric plant in
Guárico, under the name of Ezequiel Zamora, with the purpose of
strengthening the regions of southern Guárico and San Fernando de Apure.
Furthermore, he announced the continuation of the remodeling of the
thermoelectric plant in Guanta, Anzoátegui state, in order supply 300
additional megawatts.

Published in Quantum N.45