Caracas.- In his Annual Message to the Nation, Mr. Nicolás Maduro, president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, made an balance of the consequences of the commercial, financial and maritime blockade against Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A (PDVSA), by the United States.
During his intervention in the National Assembly plenary, president Maduro assured that “PDVSA has been a political target of the destruction policy designed and executed by the extremist government of outgoing president Donald Trump.”
Mr. Maduro explained that “between years 2014 and 2019, oil production dropped by 69%, because of the lack of resources to produce oil, maintain facilities and the blockade to Venezuelan hydrocarbon sale.”
He also pointed out that “Venezuela has the capacity to keep producing, but cannot place products in the market. We could not place a simple oil drop in the world for 13 months”.
Moreover, he said that currently PDVSA is ready for a productive recovery and has set the goal of 1.5 million of barrels a day through the new mechanisms of production, financing and commercialization. “Oil workers have carried the industry upon their shoulders to warranty production, reduce operational costs and finance the industry in various ways”, said he.
The head of state showed production history charts since March 2015, before Barack Obama’s decree comparing them to current levels. To this respect, he said that Venezuela would have got incomes equivalent to 102 thousand 500 million Dollars during all that time, if production had been of 2 millions 153 thousand oil crude barrels a day.
President Maduro pointed out that “during oil sabotage from December 2002 to April 2002, Venezuela had losses of approximately 20 thousand million of Dollars”, and also assured that “this strategy reached its maximum level in year 2019 by the confiscation and plunder of CITGO, the most shameful plunder operation ever made in recent years against any nation of the world”.
National Assembly requested to regain CITGO
During his speech before the new elected deputies to the National Assembly, president Maduro numbered the simultaneous attacks suffered by PDVSA since year 2015, when North American president Barack Obama signed a decree qualifying Venezuela as a threat for the United States.
The head of state said that PDVSA has suffered a financial chase to strangle its economy; legal and political operations in foreign courts to deprive it from its assets; plunder to Venezuelan foreign oil trade including transport companies; plunder and theft to carriers of gasoline bought and paid by Venezuela, which was later auctioned by the United States and the internal plunder to make oil production fail, plus in-house corruption.
Mr. Maduro requested the special commission designed by the National Assembly to enquire every crime committed by the outgoing National Assembly, protected by a foreign power, which has also affected production capacity and industry incomes.
“May I humbly and upon a complete respect to the autonomy of the entity, on behalf of Venezuelan working class people, to pay special attention to the plunder of CITGO, our gold, our accounts in England, Monómeros company, confiscated assets and frozen resources in the international bank”, he added.
“I make you all the proposal to go together, parliament and Executive Power as State, as one people, for our assets and resources abroad”, he stated.
Venezuela wishes to comply with its obligations
Venezuela went from having over 50 thousand million Dollars in year 2013 to barely have 743 million Dollars in year 2020; It means that out of each 100 Dollars for oil sale in 2014, today it only gets a bit more that 1 Dollar. It was explained in details by the head of state and he assured that this fact caused Venezuela’s economy contraction.
The president pointed out that the blockade has affected not only Venezuelan people and state, but also domestic and foreign industries, inside and outside the country, which have been severely damaged by the blockade. Such is the case of bondholders, oil field companies, investors and service companies, among some others.
“Amidst these circumstances, Venezuela showed its willing to pay its foreign debts. Venezuela is a responsible country, a sample of this is that between years 2013 and 2017, though economic war and sanctions, our country paid external debt creditors a total of 109 thousand 619 million of Dollars”, added Mr. Maduro.
In this sense, the head of state ratified the commitment of the Venezuelan government to pay debts to international investors. That is why he exhorted them to set mechanism of direct negotiation to find new ways leading to the solution of this blockade situation which affects both parties.