Russia’s top oil producer Rosneft and Venezuela’s state oil company PDVSA signed an agreement to set up a joint venture to develop natural gas in the South American country, Reuters reported. Each firm will have a 50% share in the venture that will develop three offshore fields with an expected capacity of 25m cubic meters per day [9b cubic meters a year], providing a potential to develop the world-class, export-oriented pipeline or an LNG project.

Additionally, Rosneft also plans to invest $500m to raise its stake in its Petromonagas gas joint venture with PDVSA in Venezuela’s Orinoco Belt region to 40%, Venezuelan President, Nicolas Maduro, said, according to BloombergThe Petromonagas project in Venezuela’s Orinoco belt produces and upgrades more than 130,000b/d of crude to be processed in traditional refineries, according to Rosneft.

The cash infusion will help the holder of the world’s largest oil reserves to weather its deepest recession in a decade. With the plunge in oil prices eroding government revenue, Maduro raised gasoline prices in mid February for the first time in almost two decades and devalued the nation’s currency to get more bolivars for its petrodollars.