The United States issued licenses for oil companies to operate in Venezuela.
The president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, highlighted the “slight but significant steps” that the United States took by “providing licenses” to oil companies to operate in the South American country, as part of the economic sanctions relief announced by Washington after the beginning of the Russian military operation in Ukraine.
Italian oil company Eni and Spanish Repsol could start shipping Venezuelan oil to Europe as soon as next month to offset Russian crude, resuming oil-for-debt swaps that halted more than two years ago when Washington tightened sanctions on Venezuela, Reuters reported.
During a radio interview on the AM 530 station in Caracas, President Maduro stressed that “a week ago, the United States took some slight but significant steps, by granting licenses to Chevron (US), Eni (Italy) and Repsol (Spain) to start processes that leads to the production of gas and oil in Venezuela to export to their natural markets.”
Los primeros pasos que se han dado para tener una comunicación con el Gobierno de los EE.UU., han sido significativos. Mantendremos nuestras exigencias permanentes para que se levanten todas las sanciones crueles e inhumanas contra el Pueblo venezolano. pic.twitter.com/891w6Hk7Ws
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) June 5, 2022
The volume of oil Eni and Repsol are expected to receive is not large, said one of the people consulted by the British news agency, and any impact on world oil prices will be modest.
The two European energy corporations, which have joint ventures with Venezuela’s state oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, SA (PDVSA), may count crude shipments to offset outstanding debts and arrears of dividends, the sources said.
A key condition, one of the sources said, is that the oil received “has to go to Europe. It cannot be resold elsewhere.”
The US’ Biden administration hopes that Venezuelan crude can help Europe cut dependence on Russia and redirect some of Venezuela’s cargoes from China.
Translation: Orinoco Tribune