U.S. sanctions Venezuelan state-owned oil company

The United States announced sanctions to prevent Nicolás Maduro’s regime “from further plundering Venezuela’s assets and natural resources,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said January 28.

The latest sanctions target the Venezuelan state-owned oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA), and require that revenue generated from the sale of oil in the United States be held for the Venezuelan people.

“Maduro and his cronies have used state-owned PDVSA to control, manipulate, and steal from the Venezuelan people for too long, destroying it in the process,” Pompeo said.

Photo of children in hut, statistics on Venezuela's oil revenue and poverty (© Ramon Espinosa/AP Images)
Source: OPEC Venezuela and State Dept. Photo: © Ramon Espinosa/AP Images

The Maduro regime diverted billions of dollars of oil for political ends while increasing PDVSA’s debt. It used embezzlement, graft and fraud to line the pockets of regime insiders to the detriment of the rest of the nation.