QUITO – About 54 percent of Ecuador’s oil exports in September went to China, state-owned Petroecuador said Thursday, adding that the remaining exports of crude went to Venezuela and Uruguay.
Ecuador had about 9 million barrels of crude available for export last month, Petroecuador’s international sales manager, Nilsen Arias, said.
The Andean country is producing about 510,000 barrels per day of crude, Arias said.
The United States imported about 75 percent of Ecuador’s crude until a few years ago, when fast-growing China started to expand its presence in South America.
China has provided Ecuador with about $7.8 billion in loans and up-front payments for crude since 2009.
Petroecuador has agreed to export 130 million barrels of crude to China over a six-year period as part of a deal linked to a $2 billion loan.
Oil is Ecuador’s No. 1 export product and the main source of revenue for the Andean nation. EFE