The president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, is visiting Honduras and Nicaragua to discuss regional cooperation and energy deals.

Mr. Chavez was meeting Tuesday, with his Honduran counterpart, Manuel Zelaya, at the presidential residence in the capital, Tegucigalpa.  Mr. Chavez was previously in Guatemala, where he attended the presidential inauguration Monday of Alvaro Colom.

News reports say Mr. Chavez and his Honduran counterpart were to discuss a possible contract between Honduras and Petrocaribe, a Venezuelan initiative that allows the purchase of Venezuelan oil at preferential rates.

Mr. Chavez travels on to Nicaragua, where he is to meet with President Daniel Ortega.  Reports say the two will lay plans for the activities of the regional trade area called the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas, which includes Nicaragua, Bolivia, Venezuela and Cuba.