Trump warns of more U.S. sanctions on Venezuelan oil sector
26 Feb 2020

The United States is preparing to impose more sanctions on Venezuela’s oil sector, President Donald Trump said on Tuesday, in an attempt to choke financing to President Nicolas Maduro’s government.

“You will be seeing something on that in the not too distant future,” Trump told a news conference in Delhi when asked if Washington would impose more sanctions on Venezuela or on Indian firms that buy Venezuelan oil from third parties after imposing sanctions on a trading unit of Russian oil giant Rosneft.

“There could be very serious sanctions,” he said without giving details. “You are going to see in a little while. You are asking a question right in the middle of us doing something.”

The United States imposed sanctions last week on Rosneft Trading SA as it emerged as a key intermediary for the sale of Venezuelan oil.

India and China are the important buyers of Venezuelan oil, with India importing about 342,000 barrels per day for Venezuela in 2019, according to tanker data obtained by Reuters.

Reliance Industries Ltd, operator of the world’s biggest refining complex, and Nayara Energy, part-owned by Rosneft, are the only Indian buyers of Venezuelan oil. The two firms had been purchasing Venezuelan oil from Rosneft.

U.S. Special Representative for Venezuela Elliott Abrams told Reuters on Monday that new sanctions against Venezuela’s oil sector will be more aggressive in punishing people and companies that violate them.

By Nidhi Verma and Aftab Ahmed, Reuters, 25 February 2020

Read more at Reuters

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