China Rejects US-Led Auction of Venezuelan Company CITGO

Chinese Diplomat Lin Jian, June 18, 2024. Photo: X/ @pueblopatriota

June 19, 2024 Hour: 8:44 am

‘We oppose illegal U.S. unilateral sanctions and far-reaching jurisdiction against Venezuela,’ Diplomat Lin stated.

On Tuesday, China strongly condemned the seizure of CITGO Petroleum Corporation by U.S. authorities, calling the move a flagrant violation of international law.


Venezuelan National Assembly Repudiates the US-Backed Theft of CITGO

“The forced sale constitutes a new episode of the multifaceted aggression carried out by United States institutions against Venezuela,” Chinese Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson Lin Jian stated, urging Washington to lift the unilateral coercive sanctions imposed on Venezuela, since they threaten the stability and development of that nation.

“China firmly upholds the United Nations Charter and the basic norms governing international relations. We oppose illegal U.S. unilateral sanctions and far-reaching jurisdiction against Venezuela.”

Through social networks, the Venezuelan Foreign Affairs Minister Yvan Gil reacted to the words of the Chinese government by thanking it for its solidarity in a case of illegitimate and illegal appropriation of assets that belong to the Bolivarian nation.

“On behalf of President Nicolas Maduro, we want to express our gratitude to the Government of China for its firm rejection of the dispossession by the United States of our company CITGO, as well as for condemning the illegal sanctions that continue to affect our oil industry. These actions seek to inflict harm on our country and criminally appropriate our resources,” he said.

The CITGO Petrolium Corporation, which is the subsidiary of Petrolium of Venezuela (PDVSA) in the United States, is under the crosshairs of transnationals seeking to misappropriate its refinery, which is the seventh most important refinery in the United States.

Currently, U.S. authorities are implementing a sale of CITGO shares to supposedly pay its debts. This PDVSA subsidiary is at risk of being seized as a group of creditors have seizure orders that could be executed if the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) authorizes it.

In 2018, a Delaware court led by Judge Leonard Stark ruled in favor of the Canadian corporation Crystallex in a lawsuit against Venezuela. He decided that CITGO’s debts to its creditors could be settled by selling the assets of the Venezuelan company.

In January 2019, the Trump administration handed control of CITGO to the Venezuelan far-right opposition. That happened at a time when this oil company was valued at US$12 billion and had three refineries, six pipelines, and about 4.200 service stations across the United States.

Since then, CITGO has remained under the control of a board of shareholders that does not respond to the decisions made by PDVSA or the Venezuelan state, a situation that contradicts the most basic principles of international private and public law. The dispossession of assets belonging to the Venezuelan people will probably end with the CITGO auction on July 15.

Sources: PL – CIIP

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