Venezuela

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For years, the bolivar drifted toward irrelevancy as Venezuelans embraced the economic stability brought on by the widespread use of the U.S. dollar, Bloomberg News reported. But the Socialist regime, always reluctant to fully turn its economy over to the dollar, is now making a surprise bid to revive the local currency. Emboldened by surging oil exports that are fueling economic growth and helping keep the foreign-exchange rate steady, the government is pushing Venezuelans to use the bolivar more by slapping a 3% tax on purchases made with dollars in shops, restaurants and grocery stores.
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Cuba is struggling to cover a fuel deficit as imports from Venezuela and other countries remain below historical levels and global prices boosted by Russia's invasion of Ukraine make purchases almost unaffordable, according to analysts and data, Reuters reported. The Caribbean country, which is dependent on fuel imports mostly from political ally Venezuela to cover more than half of its demand, is since last month dealing with diesel and gasoline shortages leading to long lines in front of stations.
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A federal judge put in motion a sale process for Venezuela’s stake in Citgo Petroleum Corp. “up to and including selecting a winning bid,” even as the U.S. government continues to block any change in control of the Houston-based refiner, WSJ Pro Bankrupty reported. Judge Leonard Stark of the U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Del., approved a sale procedure for the shares of Citgo’s U.S. holding company, a valuable state asset controlled by the U.S.-backed opposition to Venezuela’s authoritarian regime. The shares can’t be transferred under current U.S.
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Distressed fertilizer-producer Monómeros Colombo-Venezolanos, the Colombian subsidiary of Venezuelan state-owned Pequiven, has filed for bankruptcy protection on the heels of a regulatory intervention, Argus Media reported. Colombian corporate regulator SuperSociedades is expected to accept the company into a reorganization process that would lead to an "expedited rescue plan." The strategic company supplies about 40pc of the Colombian market.

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As the power of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido has dwindled, he’s kept something in his back pocket: Citgo Petroleum Corporation, the American refiner and gas distributor with the potential to bring in hundreds of millions of dollars to help topple President Nicolas Maduro, Bloomberg News reported. Now Guaido is on the verge of losing the company. Creditors owed $7 billion in debts accrued by Maduro and his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, are mounting legal challenges to wrest control of it -- and appear to be succeeding.
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Venezuela says it will make a million-to-1 change in its currency soon, eliminating six zeros from prices in the local currency as hyperinflation continues to plague the troubled South American nation, the Associated Press reported. Venezuela’s central bank on Thursday announced the change to the bolivar will go into effect Oct. 1. The new 100 bolivar bill will be the highest denomination. It is equivalent to 100,000,000 of the current bolivar. This is the third adjustment since socialist leaders began governing Venezuela.
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President Joe Biden’s administration rejected Nicolas Maduro’s call for relief from U.S. sanctions, saying the Venezuelan leader needs to do more toward restoring democracy before penalties would be lifted, Bloomberg News reported. Maduro, a target of crippling U.S. sanctions under former President Donald Trump, reached out to Biden in an exclusive Bloomberg interview last week, calling on him to lift sanctions, normalize relations and end the “demonization of Venezuela.” Responding to Maduro’s comments, a State Department spokesman said a U.S.
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A unit of Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA on the Dutch Caribbean island of Bonaire has declared bankruptcy, citing the impact of U.S. sanctions on Venezuela, a court filing showed, Reuters reported. In a March 9 filing published last week by the Court of First Instance of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, PDVSA-owned Bonaire Petroleum Corporation (BOPEC) said it could no longer pay its debts because sanctions had cut off its “access to international trade,” as well as cash held in bank accounts.
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Millions of barrels of Venezuelan heavy crude, embargoed by the U.S., have been surreptitiously going to China, Bloomberg News reported. The cat-and-mouse games that avoid detection and sanctions include ship-to-ship transfers, shell companies and silenced satellite signals. But there’s another aspect to the dodge. It involves “doping” the oil with chemical additives and changing its name in the paperwork so it can be sold as a wholly different crude without a trace of its Venezuelan roots.

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