The United States revokes sanctions relief for Venezuela

The United States government announced this Wednesday, April 17, that it is revoking the relief of sanctions against Venezuela for failing to comply with the agreement on free and fair elections

The United States Department of the Treasury announced this Wednesday, April 17, that it is revoking General License 44, which allowed the relief of sanctions to Venezuela related to free elections and oil transactions.

However, the United States government has indicated that “it will apply the 44A license, which gives companies that did business with PDVSA a period of 45 days to close any progress.”

Likewise, the State Department, through its spokesperson, stated that “to implement an orderly process after the expiration of General License 44, the United States will issue this 45-day liquidation license (44A).”

Some restrictions apply, since according to the OFAC text of the new license, 44a, it warns that it does not authorize:

Any transaction involving any financial institution blocked pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13850 other than the Central Bank of Venezuela or Banco de Venezuela SA Banco Universal.

Supply of goods or services to, or a new investment in, an entity located in Venezuela that is owned or controlled by, or is a joint venture with, an entity located in the Russian Federation.

Any transaction related to new investments in oil or gas sector operations in Venezuela by a person located in the Russian Federation or any entity owned or controlled by a person located in the Russian Federation

Any transaction prohibited by subsections 1(a)(i) – (iii) or 1(b) of the E.O. 13808, other than the payment of invoices for goods or services related to oil or gas sector operations in Venezuela, or the delivery of oil or gas from Venezuela to creditors of the Government of Venezuela, including creditors of PdVSA Entities, for the purpose of pay debts.

Any transaction prohibited by E.O. 13827 or E.O. 13835; either

The unlocking of any property locked under the VSR. (c) Effective April 17, 2024, General License No. 44, dated October 18, 2023, is superseded and replaced in its entirety by this General License No. 44A.

However, according to analysts, the resolution, in its small print, so to speak, leaves companies free to individually request a type of authorization in each case.



(Reference image source: Tim Mossholder in Unsplash)

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