UPDATE 1-Venezuela's PDVSA says consolidated debt rose 8.4 pct in 2013
CARACAS, Jan 22 (Reuters) - Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA said on Wednesday its consolidated financial debt rose 8.4 percent at the end of 2013 versus the year before to $43.4 billion, not including its debt to service providers or financing for joint ventures. Petroleum Minister Rafael Ramirez had said in November the company's consolidated debt fell to $39.2 billion during the first half of last year, compared with $40.0 billion at the end of 2012. PDVSA, the financial engine of Venezuela's socialist government, accelerated its borrowing sharply during 2013. In 2013, PDVSA sold bonds worth $4.5 billion to finance operating expenses. It also agreed more than $10 billion in private loans through agreements with politically-allied nations including China and Russia, some of them repaid in oil. The company did not give a new figure on Wednesday for its debts to service companies. During 2012, those debts stood at $16.75 billion, a 35 percent increase over the year before. PDVSA's large social spending commitments are a reason analysts tend to give less attention to its financial results than for listed oil companies. Last month, PDVSA said a change to the tax system and a currency devaluation had helped its net income soar during the first half of 2013.
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