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Venezuela: US threatens new sanctions as hyperinflation slows down

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Staff Writer | Saturday March 16, 2019 5:56AM ET
Venezuela street
LatAm   The measures would aim to block state-owned financial institutions

The US is considering new sanctions that would stop Visa, Mastercard and other financial service companies from processing payments in Venezuela, according to a White House official quoted by Reuters.


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“The purpose of these sanctions is to continue to deprive the illegitimate Maduro regime of access to funds,” the official said.

According to the Reuters report, the measures would aim to “block state-owned financial institutions’ access to the international financial system” while exempting “everyday Venezuelans,” but no details were offered.

It is also unclear at the time of writing whether the measure would affect debit cards as well as credit cards, with the former being the most common form of payment in Venezuela given the cash shortages caused by hyperinflation.

US sanctions have also seen two shipping companies sever ties with Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA.

US-based McQuilling Partners and German Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM), which managed 4 and 15 tankers for PDVSA, respectively, have recently announced they are no longer providing oil-shipping services to the Venezuelan firm, making it harder for Caracas to place its crude in global markets.

 

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