Jan 17 – The United States on Tuesday extended by three months a license that protects Venezuelan-owned oil refiner Citgo Petroleum from bondholders trying to seize its assets to recover outstanding debts.
US protections for Houston-based Citgo have blocked bondholders and other creditors from proceeding with court actions by Venezuela seeking repayment of years-old debts.
Following the dissolution last month of the interim government of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó, it was unclear whether President Joe Biden’s administration would expand the security.
Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC, for its abbreviation in English) the Treasury Department extended the general license 5J until April 20. The three-month extension could signal a change in US policy. The previous license was given for 12 months.
A Citgo spokesperson was not immediately available for comment.
“Transactions relating to the sale or transfer of Citgo shares in respect of the Bonds pdvsa 8.5 percent restricted until 2020, unless specifically authorized by OFACthe office said on its website.
Citgo’s management has been involved in direct negotiations with bondholders and creditors through 2021 in an effort to find a payment solution to end the various legal matters, which in some cases has gone as far as setting an auction schedule.
OFAC An explanatory note stating that an agreement should be reached on proposals for restructuring or refinancing payments due to bondholders pdvsa 2020, additional license requirements may apply.
“The OFAC This would encourage the parties to apply for a specific license and have a favorable licensing policy for such agreements,” it added.