Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos named Interior Minister Federico Renjifo to lead the Mines and Energy Ministry as guerrilla sabotage stalls the nation’s oil production.
Renjifo, 58, replaces Mauricio Cardenas, whom Santos appointed to head the finance ministry on Aug. 23. He’s a board member of state-run oil producer Ecopetrol SA (ECOPETL), a post he will keep holding as Mines and Energy Minister, according to the government’s website.
He is “a person who has been involved in the energy industry for many years,” Santos said in a statement today on his website.
Renjifo will take over the ministry as rebels target pipelines and equipment in the fifth decade of armed conflict in Colombia, South America’s third-largest oil supplier. Production in July slid to 929,200 barrels a day, from 934,000 barrels a day in June, according to government figures.
The minister has a law degree from Javeriana University in Bogota. He held the post of deputy mines minister from 1992 to 1994 and also has worked in the finance ministry and on government development projects, according to the interior ministry. Santos didn’t name Renjifo’s replacement.
Venezuela and Brazil are South America’s largest crude suppliers.
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