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Sources: Venezuela detains acting president of US refinery Citgo

22 Noviembre 2017

"Now it is asking Petropiar to relinquish almost half of its crude production", the source said.

From August through October, PDVSA took at least 1 million barrels per month of heavy crude from Petropiar after acquiring Zuata Sweet crude from Petrocedeno earlier this year.

Those involved, Saab said, signed an agreement on July 15th to refinance the payment programs for the 2014 and 2015 bonds of the oil company. It is seeking 2 million barrels, or 45 percent of Petropiar's total production for November.

Citgo is an especially sensitive asset for PDVSA, which bought full control of it 27 years ago - before the Socialist regime installed in Venezuela by President Nicolas Maduro's late predecessor, Hugo Chavez, came to power in 1999.

The diversions are adding new strains to its ventures' cash flow. He also said many individuals who profited from the scheme are hiding in the United States.

But members of the Venezuelan opposition argue that recent investigations do not demonstrate a genuine intention of the government to eradicate corruption, but only reflect internal struggles of PDVSA.

Meanwhile, Venezuela's domestic oil industry is crashing as PDVSA's finances are so weak it is struggling to find the funds to drill wells, maintain oilfields and keep pipelines and ports working, Reuters notes. "However, some foreign oil firms operating in Venezuela have been unable to repatriate such payments to their parent companies".

Venezuela urged the U.S.to comply with Interpol's extradition order, demanding the deportation of those who fled with PDVSA's money.

Citgo has struggled to buy crude supplies directly from non-Venezuelan producers because of U.S. sanctions levied this year, according to trade sources. Citgo has said it is not facing credit issues.

The rash of arrests underline the debt woes swirling around PDVSA, which is the prime source of income for Venezuela, a country that sits atop the world's biggest oil reserves.

The other five detainees were identified as Tomeu Vadell, vice president of Refining Operations; Alirio Zambrano, vice president and general manager of the Corpus Christi Refinery; Jorge Toledo, Vice President of Supply and Marketing; Gustavo Cardenas, Vice President of Strategic Relations with Shareholders and Government, and Jose Luis Zambrano; Vice President of Shared Services. "This is corruption, corruption of the most rotten kind".

Sources: Venezuela detains acting president of US refinery Citgo