Tug-of-war: U.S. refiner Citgo caught in Venezuela political upheaval

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (Reuters) – Citgo Petroleum Corp, the eighth largest U.S. refiner and Venezuela’s top foreign asset, is in the middle of a tug-of-war as the Trump administration tries to use the company as leverage to topple Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. Following the U.S. decision to impose sanctions on Venezuela’s oil industry this week, both sides have engaged in aggressive moves for control of Citgo, which has roots in the United States dating back 100 years, but has been owned by Venezuela’s state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela, or PVDSA, for three decades. Washington, along with numerous nations in the Western Hemisphere, has recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s president amid an economic crisis that has caused millions of people to flee the country. Maduro was re-elected last year in a contest widely seen as fraudulent. As Guaido this week worked with Washington to wrest control of the company, Venezuela responded by ordering dozens of Citgo’s expatriate staff in the United States to return to Caracas by the end of February, people familiar with the matter said. Earlier in the week, Citgo sent a team of executives to Washington amid efforts by Guaido and the U.S. government to appoint a… continue reading

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Source: CTRM Center

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