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Treasury sanctions Venezuela state-owned oil firm

US announces sanctions against Venezuela oil firm from CNBC.

The Trump administration will sanction Venezuela’s state-owned oil firm, a move the White House has long put off for fear that it would raise oil prices and hurt American refiners.

The move comes after a turbulent week for Venezuela that has created a standoff over the country’s leadership. The sanctions aim to transfer control of Venezuela’s oil wealth to forces that oppose socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro and deprive the strongman of resources that could prolong his grip on power.

Last week, the opposition leader of Venezuela’s National Assembly, Juan Guaido, named himself interim president amid street protests. President Donald Trump soon recognized Guaido as the nation’s leader and his administration has been marshaling international support for the opposition figure since then.

Maduro, having recently started another term following highly disputed elections, is refusing to back down. He is supported by the country’s minister of defense and Russia.

Nicolas Maduro, president of Venezuela, speaks during a swearing in ceremony for the new board of directors of Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA), Venezuela's state oil company, in Caracas, Venezuela, on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017.

Carlos Becerra | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Nicolas Maduro, president of Venezuela, speaks during a swearing in ceremony for the new board of directors of Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA), Venezuela’s state oil company, in Caracas, Venezuela, on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Monday determined that people operating in Venezuela’s oil sector are subject to U.S. sanctions.The nation’s energy industry is dominated by state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela, better known as PDVSA.

Mnuchin said PDVSA has long been a vehicle for embezzlement and corruption by officials and businessmen. The sanctions against PDVSA will prevent the nation’s oil wealth from being diverted to Maduro and will only be lifted when his regime hands control of them to successor government, he added.

“The path to sanctions relief for PDVSA is through the expeditious transfer of control to the interim president or a subsequent democratically elected government who is committed to taking concrete and meaningful actions to combat corruption,” Mnuchin said during a White House press briefing.

Under the sanctions, U.S. companies can continue to purchase Venezuelan oil, but the payments must be held in an account that cannot be accessed by the Maduro regime.

“If the people in Venezuela want to continue to sell us oil, as long as the money that money goes into blocked accounts, we’ll continue to take it,” Mnuchin said. “Otherwise we will not be buying it.”

Oil prices pared some losses after news of the sanctions broke, but major benchmarks were still down more than 2.5 percent following the official announcement. U.S. crude ended Monday’s session 3.2 percent lower earlier in the day.

In order to minimize disruptions and support for humanitarian aid, Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Controls has issued general licenses that authorize some transactions and activities with PDVSA to continue for a limited time, Mnuchin said. European and Caribbean companies will also be granted licenses so they can wind down business with PDVSA in an orderly fashion.

PDVSA’s Citgo refineries in the U.S. will be allowed to continue to operate, but revenues must be placed in an escrow account in the United States. Citgo operates three U.S. refineries with a combined ability to process about 750,000 barrels per day of crude oil into fuels.

Venezuela’s oil production has cratered in recent years following a long stretch of mismanagement and economic crisis that has prevented PDVSA from maintaining output, creating a vicious cycle of falling supplies and revenue.

Still, Venezuela remains one of the largest suppliers to U.S. refineries. Venezuela shipped an average 580,000 bpd of crude oil and petroleum products to the country in the year through October 2018, the last month data were available.

Confirmation of the administration’s intent to sanction PDVSA came from Sen. Marco Rubio prior to the press conference, after Axios earlier reported the impending actions.

“The Maduro crime family has used PDVSA to buy and keep the support of many military leaders,” Rubio said in a statement. “The oil belongs to the Venezuelan people, and therefore the money PDVSA earns from its export will now be returned to the people through their legitimate constitutional government.”

CNBC



115 Comments on "Treasury sanctions Venezuela state-owned oil firm"

  1. Cloggie on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 1:06 am 

    Give it a rest already..You are a mean old crank ranting like loon every day..Why dont you enjoy your retirement?

    Mak IS enjoying his retirement, mobster, at your cost.lol

  2. Cloggie on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 1:08 am 

    Climate change latest:

    US Mid-West -40C

    http://www.spiegel.de/panorama/gesellschaft/wetter-in-den-usa-kaelte-polar-cortex-fordert-erste-todesopfer-a-1250855.html

    At the same time Down-Under had the warmest night in recorded history in the Southern hemisphere: 36C

  3. Cloggie on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 1:28 am 

    Brexit latest: British car industry collapsing (-9% production in 2018)

    http://www.spiegel.de/wirtschaft/unternehmen/brexit-furcht-britische-autoproduktion-bricht-ein-a-1250858.html

    Present for Trump: low interest rates remain in place for the moment:

    http://www.spiegel.de/wirtschaft/soziales/federal-reserve-hebt-leitzins-nicht-an-und-setzt-auf-vorsichtigere-geldpolitik-a-1250841.html

    Don’t fly to Newcastle during a storm!

    http://www.spiegel.de/video/windstaerke-6-extreme-schraeglage-beim-start-video-99024568.html

    (Probably unrelated with Brexit.lol)

    Google Earth black spots or the beauty of planet Earth:

    http://www.spiegel.de/reise/fernweh/bildband-von-peter-und-beverly-pickford-wilde-landschaften-aller-kontinente-a-1247177.html

    Multicult latest, bloodbath London:

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6650471/Horror-moment-parents-held-police-try-reach-sons-body.html

    So how can you tell me you’re lonely
    And say for you that the sun don’t shine
    Let me take you by the hand and lead you through the streets of London
    I’ll show you something to make you change your mind

    Patriarchy strikes back, women nowhere to be seen:

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6651027/Sorry-ladies-nation-voted-seven-finalists-greatest-icon-men.html

    Not sure how to interpret this, but the British public voted for Mandela over Roosevelt, Churchill and Thatcher. Given those choices I would do the same, but then again my personal peace-loving WW2 favorites and true Europeans,

    1. Chamberlain
    2. de Gaulle
    3. Hitler

    …were not on the ballot.

  4. makati1 on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 2:42 am 

    Cloggie, from an article I read, the US vortex was caused by heat from Morocco being shot to the Arctic by the Jet Stream. It tore the cycle apart.

    https://earth.nullschool.net/#current/wind/isobaric/500hPa/orthographic=-222.91,78.95,425

    The Jet Stream never swings as far south as the Philippines.

  5. I AM THE MOB on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 3:34 am 

    The most multicultural city in the world

    https://i.redd.it/taj3pksg8md21.jpg

  6. Davy on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 4:23 am 

    “France’s Red Scarves: Ready-Made Counter-Protest And New Media Darlings”
    https://tinyurl.com/y9jrz6nr

    “Exploiting, or manufacturing, the backlash Whether or not the Red Scarves movement is an establishment-backed effort to divide the highly successful Yellow Vest protests remains to be seen. However, it ultimately matters little if the Red Scarves’ motives are genuine or not, as the French government and a sympathetic international press have already shown they are all too eager to push to divide the Yellow Vests movement, or at least weaken it, by playing the two groups off of each other. While the French government and well-known media outlets had already been busy demonizing the group despite strong popular support across France, with a new group having emerged as its apparent antithesis, the pressure will now grow to disperse the Yellow Vest movement while also attempting to use the Red Scarves to manufacture support for draconian government policies and police crackdowns aimed at finally ending the establishment-threatening protests.”

  7. Davy on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 4:35 am 

    “Where Global Corruption Is Rampant”
    https://tinyurl.com/yd7nbhbf
    (graph) https://tinyurl.com/y8umnkfb

    Makatoland is mostly red

  8. I AM THE MOB on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 4:45 am 

    Mak

    Why would the US go to war with China when they have the worlds largest debt bubble and they are going to have a massive permanent oil shortage soon? All we have to do is sit back and eat popcorn and watch Asia and Europe collapse..

    We will be oil independent by 2020..

    You are so ignorant and can’t see the big picture.

  9. I AM THE MOB on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 5:17 am 

    Where the fuck is the false flag? I want to see the russian people running around with their skin falling off..Blow up all their crazy asses!

  10. Antius on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 5:53 am 

    “Multicult latest, bloodbath London:

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6650471/Horror-moment-parents-held-police-try-reach-sons-body.html

    So how can you tell me you’re lonely”

    The dickheads that run the British government import billions of violent ape-men into Britain and then act shocked and surprised when they continue to behave like violent ape-men. No doubt they pontificate for a while, before producing some onerous new law about the carrying of knives. As if passing new laws is going to help the situation. Ape-man has no laws, cares nothing about the law and will continue to be ape-man, with knives, guns and acid, regardless of what the law happens to say.

    What Britain really needs is for its dwindling native population to grow some balls and set about achieving a ‘regime change’ that removes the corrupt Kosher government that did this to us in the first place. But they are too busy watching TV to do anything genuinely useful.

  11. JuanP on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 6:12 am 

    “EU parliament urges member states to recognize Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president ”
    https://www.rt.com/news/450229-eu-parliament-guaido-president/

    So much for independence, sovereignty, and non interference. The US vassals are at it again. And the same applies to several Latin American countries and the OAS. I am proud to report that the Uruguayan government has resisted US threats and pressure on this matter so far, but the head of the OAS, a Uruguayan, sided with the criminal US government in its illegal actions.

  12. Davy on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 6:26 am 

    “The Polar Vortex, Frigid Temperatures, & Climate Change: 3 Things to Know”
    https://tinyurl.com/y8j6vsu7

    “Despite current cold snaps, global temperatures have been steadily rising. First, it is worth noting that record cold temperatures are happening against the backdrop of unabated warming. The last four years have been the warmest on record, and there is every indication that this global warming trend will continue.”

    “A growing body of research links rising Arctic temperatures with extreme winters The Arctic is warming two to three times as fast as the global average. Scientists say warmer air temperatures in the Arctic can weaken the polar jet stream, a west-to-east river of wind where cold Arctic air meets milder subtropical air in the mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. A strong jet stream typically traps the polar vortex over the Arctic, but when it’s weakened, the cold air can stray southward into the United States. The impacts of a warming Arctic on mid-latitudes is a rapidly emerging field of scientific inquiry. There have been some significant scientific findings in just the past year:”

    “Warmer Arctic linked to U.S. winter extremes: Scientists have strengthened our understanding of the link between a warmer Arctic and the frequency and changes of U.S. winter weather, especially cold spells and heavy snows in the Northeast and upper Midwest.”

    “Warmer Arctic linked to Eurasian winter extremes: Researchers have now confirmed a pattern of colder winters and more frequent cold air outbreaks in Siberia, following sea ice loss in the Barents-Kara seas in late autumn. In another study, scientists found that over the past 37 years, weakened polar vortexes happened more frequently, allowing frigid air to escape the Arctic. This helps explain cooling trends seen in mid-latitude Eurasia.”

    “Warmer Arctic linked to prolonged extremes: Scientists have now established a link between Arctic warming, sea ice loss and more persistent weather patterns in North America. When weather conditions get “stuck” and last for many days—a phenomenon caused by altered wind circulation patterns—they can cause prolonged and damaging droughts, cold spells and heat waves.”

  13. deadly on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 6:40 am 

    Americans need to get a clue. You’re next.

    I hope and pray to God above that France erupts into full blown civil war and just about everybody dies. Get the bulldozers fired up and push the bodies into heaps. Paris stands in the midst of no survivors. Too bad, so sad.

    Pour some gasoline at the base of the pyramid of the stacked bodies and light it afire.

    If they are climate change alarmists, it’ll be an even better day. The more the merrier.

    Humans need to do something useful instead of doing the same stupid shti as yesterday today.

    Get a life, or not.

    More dead humans, especially global warming nut cases, will be a good day for the earth and another hard day on the planet.

    Good riddance to all global warming insane anti-human humans.

    A great day for the universe. One black hole less.

  14. JuanP on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 6:44 am 

    “Refusal to hand over Venezuelan gold means the end of Britain as a financial center”
    https://www.rt.com/business/450144-venezuela-gold-boe-wolff/
    I have to admit that I think that Venezuela’s government has been incredibly stupid where its wealth and investments abroad are concerned. They had 20 years to sell CITGO and PDVSA assets in the USA and repatriate the gold in Britain. I always thought it was too risky not to do it. We all know that these countries have criminal governments that systematically violate international laws. I hope other countries learn their lesson and start pulling money from the USA and its vassal states, but I don’t expect this to happen because most governments are incredibly stupid and corrupt. We have been warned!

  15. JuanP on Thu, 31st Jan 2019 9:12 am 

    “US refiners brace for Venezuela supply crunch”
    https://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-General/US-Refiners-Brace-For-Venezuelan-Supply-Crunch.html

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