Chavez does not plan to sell stakes from PDVSA

May 02, 1999 02:00 AM

President Hugo Chavez, speaking to employees at PDVSA, has made it clear he wants the oil sector opening (Apertura) to remain in place, saying he'd like to see foreign investors here for another 100 years.
During a marathon speech of almost three hours, Chavez told his audience he would respect the agreements signed by those companies that have invested in the so-called Apertura and that he would like to see those companies invest in other projects here.
PDVSA has seen its workforce reduced with the slide in the global price of oil but Chavez said he would not now sell the company's assets as he had threatened to do during his campaign for the presidency.
Referring to the US oil-refining subsidiary of Citgo or PDVSA's stake in the German Ruhr Oel joint venture, Chavez said, "It has been said that I want to sell Citgo and Veba. That is not our intention and never has been,".
On the contrary, Chavez said that he wanted to try and get a better return on the 1.5 mm bpd from those foreign refineries, urgent funds for the cash-strapped government.
What he does want to get rid of, he said, are PDVSA's non-productive assets such as aeroplanes, boats, houses etc. in a bid to cut costs and details of this will be released in the next few weeks.

Source: BBC via Iinoil
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