Facing criticism on Bolivia's ballooning debt with Venezuela, President Evo Morales on Monday defended the ties with its main creditor.
"Bolivia receives cooperation not only from Venezuela, but also others," Morales told a press conference at the presidential headquarters.
Morales said Bolivia's external cooperation was crucial especially in the current time of global crisis, and defended a Venezuela-sponsored program called "Bolivia changes, Evo fulfills".
The opposition have been questioning the fact that the country's debt with Venezuela has grown almost 800 percent over last five years, from 46.8 million U.S. dollars in June 2007 to 420.9 million dollars in June 2012.
Morales, a close ally of Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, has repeatedly explained that his country's debt with Venezuela is due to diesel imports used to fulfill almost half of Bolivia's domestic needs.
To dispel criticism that Bolivia is relying too heavily on Venezuela, Morales said Bolivia gets credit from several countries, because it is perceived as a stable country.
"The cooperation we receive comes from many countries, Asian and European, as well as from Latin America, such as Brazil, which gave us four helicopters," said Morales.
The Bolivian president said this year, the "Bolivia changes, Evo fulfills" program was being funded with resources from Bolivia' s National Treasury.