The hurricane that unleashed in Venezuela at the beginning of this year seemed like it was going to move the foundations of the country in a new definitive wave. There was an international movement that divided the world into two blocks: those who sided with the opposition Juan Guaidó and those who supported President Nicolás Maduro. In this black and white scenario, a fundamental piece has remained within the gray hues: China.
It is, along with Russia, the main economic supporter of Chavismo for more than a decade. But Venezuela's $ 20 billion debt, according to calculations by the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, along with its current inability to meet payments and the political balance reeling towards an uncertain future, have caused Beijing to exercise prudence and avoid taking clear political positions. .
That has led many to wonder whether the Chinese government supports Maduro or Guaidó. Or if, as several Venezuelans who have followed the economic issue feel, China is playing two bands.
The world facing a new political crisis
In January 2019, the little-known Juan Guaidó once again shook the carpet of Venezuelan politics when he proclaimed himself president. The opposition had declared Nicolás Maduro a “usurper” when he was sworn in as president on January 10 in elections that had been held with a large part of the opposition disqualified or absent, allegations of fraud and illegitimacy and the ignorance of a large part of the international community . Under the umbrella of three articles of the Constitution, Guaidó proclaimed himself president in charge of the country with a roadmap: "cessation of the usurpation (of Maduro), transitional government, free elections."
Countries like Russia, Turkey and Cuba sided with Maduro right away. Ten countries in Latin America, the United States, Canada, and more than half of the European Union - including Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom, and France - recognized Guaidó.
Instead, Beijing issued a more ambiguous statement. "China supports the efforts made by the Venezuelan government to maintain national sovereignty, independence and stability," said Hua Chunying, a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
million dollars is the estimated investment of China in Venezuela In practice, he opted for pragmatism, guided by his historical defense of the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries and without losing sight of the fact that taking either side could put his investments at risk.