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Uribe, Chavez, Correa Inaugurate Gas Pipeline in Colombia


Colombian President Alvaro Uribe and two of his South American counterparts have opened a gas pipeline between Colombia and Venezuela.

Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and Rafael Correa of Ecuador participated in a ceremony Friday by turning on the pipeline valves in Colombia's Guajira region. It connects Guajira with Venezuela's Lake Maracaibo area.

Venezuela's state-owned oil company, PDVSA, invested millions of dollars in the 225-kilometer-long pipeline. All but 89 kilometers of the line are in Venezuelan territory.

Officials say the pipeline will have the capacity to pump 14 million cubic meters of natural gas daily from Colombia to Venezuela. They also say that the pipeline is to carry gas to Venezuela until 2011, then reverse course to take the gas in the other direction.

Venezuela's president has been promoting Latin American energy integration. He also wants to extend a vast gas pipeline across South America.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.

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