PDVSA, Repsol Pact Boosts Venezuelan Oil

PDVSA, Repsol Pact Boosts Venezuelan Oil
PDVSA, Repsol Pact Boosts Venezuelan Oil

In Caracas, state-owned PDVSA signs an agreement with Spain's Repsol to increase oil and gas production in Venezuela.

The Spanish giant says it "will continue to do business in Venezuela" and that the South American country will receive "all the economic wealth" from oil.

This comes as the United States says it will reinstate sanctions on Venezuela's oil and gas trade after President Nicolas Maduro's government continued its repression of opponents, leading the president of Venezuela's National Assembly to respond that the US is "shooting itself in the foot."

President Joe Biden's administration suspended some sanctions after Maduro's government and the opposition agreed in Barbados last October to hold a free and fair vote in 2024 under the watchful eye of international observers.

But the thaw ended when Maduro's opponents were not allowed to run against him in elections, and the United States said Caracas had now failed to make progress ahead of an April 18 deadline.

Venezuela has the largest proven oil reserves in the world, but production has plummeted after years of mismanagement and crushing sanctions.

From its traditional 3,000,000 barrels a day, Venezuela began a slow productive decline starting in 2005, at the height of the effervescence of Chavismo, the movement that follows the precepts of former president Hugo Chávez.

Aggravated by politicization, disinvestment and rampant corruption, and with the final blow of international sanctions, national oil production plummeted to 300,000 barrels a day in 2021.

The licenses and partial agreements of some companies with PDVSA, along with Tellechea’s efforts, have recovered production to the current level of 890,000 barrels a day.