Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Venezuela: Citgo, PDVSA's US Unit, Will Not Be Sold

According to The Latin American TribuneCitgo Petroleum, the US unit of state-owned oil giant PDVSA, will not be sold, Economy and Finance Minister Rodolfo Marco said.

President Nicolás Maduro plans to bolster Citgo’s operations, Marco said. “Venezuela will stay with Citgo and continue making investments in its refineries...the sale of Citgo has been ruled out and the president confirmed this,” the minister said in an interview published over the weekend in the Caracas daily El Universal.

Citgo has a vast network of service stations and operates refineries in Texas, Illinois and Louisiana with a capacity of about 750,000 barrels per day (bpd).

“Our plans for Citgo are to strengthen it increasingly more, to form the alliances needed to strengthen that investment by Venezuela in the United States,” President Nicolás Maduro said during an event last month in New York.

COMMENT: If there is any lesson to be learned from Socialist ideology it is this:

"Despite how bright and useful one can become to any organization, Socialism will trump ideology every time, particularly when the majority of cabinet minister threaten to resign."

Reports surfaced that a sale of Citgo might be in the works in August, when former Energy Minister and PDVSA chief Rafaél Ramírez said he would unload the US unit if a “convenient” offer came along.

Ramírez, who is now Venezuela’s foreign minister, estimated that Citgo might be worth “a little more” than $10 billion.

PDVSA acquired a 50% interest in 1986 in Citgo, which was founded in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, in 1910, and the remainder of the stock four years later.

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