Chevron Evacuates Venezuelan Executives As Two Workers Face Treason Charges

Following the arrest (and imprisonment on treason charges over a contract dispute with PDVSA) of two of its workers, Reuters reports, citing four people familiar, that Chevron has evacuated executives from Venezuela.

Tensions have been rising for over a week as OilPrice.com's Julianne Geiger reported two Chevron Corp. workers arrested in Venezuela last week could face treason charges, according to sources quoted by Reuters on Monday.

The draft charges that used the word treason, seen by Chevon’s own lawyers last week, may put Chevron squarely in the middle of the escalating feud between PDVSA and foreign oil companies at best, and between the Trump Administration and Maduro’s socialist regime at worst.

The employees, who oversaw the Petropiar project co-owned by PDVSA and Chevron, were jailed when they allegedly refused to sign supply contracts concocted by PDVSA that skipped the normal competitive bidding process, according to multiple sources. The parts mentioned in the contract were reportedly double the fair market price.

The Petropiar joint venture consists of PDVSA’s 70 percent share, along with Chrevron’s 30 percent. It was reported a year ago that PDVSA had offered Rosneft a 10 percent stake in the project—a stake  worth $600 million-$800 million, according to valuations of similar deals as reported by Reuters back in August.

With Venezuela already in turmoil as oil production continues to fall in the crisis-stricken country, strong-arming the already-dwindling foreign players in-country may prove unwise.

Another foreign oil major doing business in Venezuela, French Total SA, announced just last week that despite the near-economic collapse, it would stick it out there—even as the European Union discussed stricter sanctions on the Latin American country.

Other oil majors have given up on Venezuela already, after in mid-2000, then Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez confiscated a 60-percent share in all oil projects in country and turned them over to PDVSA.

Other oil majors operating there have recently spirited employees out of the country, citing safety concerns—a move that now seems particularly prudent given the treason charges that two Chevron employees may soon find themselves up against.

Chevron did remove an unspecified number of employees from Venezuela back in August 2017.

But now, as Reuters reports, having evacuated a number of executives from Venezuela, Chevron asked other employees to avoid the facilities of its joint venture with the OPEC nation’s oil firm, the sources said.

Chevron’s move to evacuate its expatriate workforce underscores the how arduous it has become for foreign oil firms and their workers to sustain operations through Venezuela’s accelerating political and economic meltdown.

The affected staff numbers about 30 people in the coastal city of Puerto la Cruz, although it is unclear how many people Chevron has already removed from the country.

Chevron refused to comment, advising that these were "personnel matters."

Chevron has no plans to exit the country, Reuters reports according to a company employee familiar with the thinking of its board of directors. The oil company has not pulled out of other tough environments in the past, the person said - citing the jailing of employees in Indonesia in 2013 - and the firm believes Venezuela will eventually stabilize.

As Venezuelan production crashes, the arrests mark an escalation of tensions between PDVSA and foreign companies over control of supply contracts and the joint ventures’ governance, sources familiar with the dispute told Reuters.

Comments

Blue Steel 309 nmewn Wed, 04/25/2018 - 14:17 Permalink

I agree with the concept of holding corporations accountable to the national/public interest, even if I disagree with the application here. Self interest of the citizens of a country/nation does not always = socialism. And pretending pure forms of any political or economic system exists in the real world is just retarded.

In reply to by nmewn

Mr.Danglemeat Pairadimes Wed, 04/25/2018 - 16:28 Permalink

The two arrested employees will get college credit for completion of course work in "Corruption 101". They'll get graduate studies credits in an institute known as Vista Hermosa. Course work will include, "Fuk you up Vato", "I want to kill everybody!" and of course the always popular "Trip to School of the Americas" located somewhere in a friendly Central American Rain Forest...courtesy of...al CIA duh.

In reply to by Pairadimes

ebear Blue Steel 309 Wed, 04/25/2018 - 15:42 Permalink

"Self interest of the citizens of a country/nation does not always = socialism.'

Nor does self-interest of well connected politicians.

A short video of expropriated properties as of 2009:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqetrQ9SEc0

Lots more since then. Just search on Venezuela expropriations.

A model of Latin American "Socialism"

1. acquire power through populist appeals to ignorant masses.

2. change constitution to consolidate power

3. install party members in key ministries, esp. finance, internal and justice dept.

4. expropriate private property

5. install friends and family as managers of acquired properties.

6. steal assets via control fraud - move proceeds offshore.

 

In reply to by Blue Steel 309

zimboe ebear Wed, 04/25/2018 - 20:15 Permalink

People get the kind of government they deserve. Always.

Grasping selfish dumbshits get a government of grasping selfish dumbshits. And murderous Islamic nutbags get murderous nutbag leaders (Syria, Iranq, those turkeys over in Turkey, et. al.).

It's just that simple.

...

So what kind of government do modern Americans deserve?

Whatever it is, we're gonna get it, sooner or later, probably involving lotsa fags in some way.

...

What do they call those big thanksgiving-type birds in Turkey?

Just turkeys, or something else?

In reply to by ebear

ZENDOG Wed, 04/25/2018 - 13:16 Permalink

Soon to come to a Country near you, called the USA.

Hope the collapse comes soon. We need to get rid of a bunch of Treasonous Bastards too.!!

Endgame Napoleon ZENDOG Wed, 04/25/2018 - 13:40 Permalink

There is always the socialism-avoidance strategy of employers hiring underemployed citizens, not just the citizens and noncitizens whose major household bills are paid by spouses, child support or monthly welfare and refundable EITC child tax credits up to $6,431, but the citizens who need for wages from one job to cover a full range of household bills, including rent that absorbs more than half of earned-only income. Employers could pay decent wages to the many, not just over-the-top wages to a couple of dual-high-earner parents, with almost every other job on offer being a part-time, low-wage, temporary, high-turnover or 1099 gig.

In reply to by ZENDOG

lostinalostworld ZENDOG Wed, 04/25/2018 - 14:26 Permalink

lol...Well the Arab world countries nationalized all the American wells and refinery operations in the early 70's...So let them Nationalize all the operations they like in South America... just greedy 'white privileged' bozos created it all anyway...just like everything else...(laughing my azz off)...sit back and wait for the 'boomerang effect' to arrive!!

In reply to by ZENDOG

lostinalostworld ZENDOG Wed, 04/25/2018 - 14:28 Permalink

lol...Well the Arab world countries nationalized all the American wells and refinery operations in the early 70's...So let them Nationalize all the operations they like in South America... just greedy 'white privileged' bozos created it all anyway...just like everything else...(laughing my azz off)...sit back and wait for the 'boomerang effect' to arrive!!

In reply to by ZENDOG

Endgame Napoleon the Dood Wed, 04/25/2018 - 13:49 Permalink

The only thing that is needed for Venezuelans to solve their economic problems is the neoliberal-Uniparty panacea of more birthing and more pay-per-birth welfare through monthly welfare and progressive-tax-code welfare systems to supplement the wages of citizens and legal / illegal immigrants who have sex and reproduce in single-earner households, with the rest of citizens subjected to the free-in-name-only labor market. That is the socialism-for-some Uniparty plan in the USA. It generates a lot of business growth (NOT) and a lot of low-wage / part-time jobs for illegal aliens and moms that keep them below the earned-income limits for welfare, with a few high-paying jobs at the top, concentrated in fewer households due to assortative mating. It generates an oligarchy with low business creation, super-low workforce participation and super-high underemployment.

In reply to by the Dood