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Venezuela's loan to aid Bolivia's coca factories

Venezuela has loaned Bolivia about $250,000 to build two coca-processing plants that will transform cocaine's raw ingredient into an invigorating and legal tea.

Jorge Alvarado, trade attaché at the Bolivian Embassy in Caracas, said Thursday that Venezuela has extended between $200,000 and $250,000 in credits to Bolivian producers to build two plants in Chapare and Las Yungas.

Coca is the base ingredient for cocaine, but the leaves also have medicinal properties and other traditional uses.

Bolivian President Evo Morales is seeking to process and commercialize coca into legal products such as coca tea, coca flour, coca-flavored liquor and coca toothpaste.

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