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Venezuela to move state oil firm PDVSA office from Lisbon to Moscow

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Staff Writer | March 2, 2019
Delcy Rodriguez
LatAm   Vice President Delcy Rodriguez

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has ordered state oil company PDVSA's office in Lisbon to be relocated to Moscow, Vice President Delcy Rodriguez said.

Moscow has backed Maduro in the face of a political challenge from opposition leader Juan Guaido, who declared himself interim president in January.

Rodriguez, explaining the decision to move PDVSA's office at a joint news conference in Moscow with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, said Europe had shown it was no longer able to guarantee the safety of Venezuela's assets.

She cited the Bank of England's reluctance to hand over her country's gold supplies as an example, and said Caracas was now determined to expand cooperation with Russia.

The PDVSA office move corresponded with plans to expand technical cooperation in extracting oil with Russian oil companies Rosneft and Gazprom, she added.

"We are going to make industrial investments to produce everything we need in our country with the Russian Federation's help," said Rodriguez. "We (Venezuela and Russia) are strategic partners."

Russia has accused the United States of trying to engineer an illegal coup to topple Maduro and the prospect of his being ousted is a geopolitical and economic headache for Moscow.

Russia, like China, has become a creditor of last resort for Caracas, lending it billions of dollars as its economy implodes. Moscow has also helped its military and oil industry.


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