Washington D.C, 6 June 2022 (TDI): The United States has eased sanctions on Venezuela by allowing two European oil companies to buy oil from Venezuela under an ‘oil for debt’ deal.

The two companies, Italy-based Eni and Spanish Respol, will be allowed to ship Venezuelan oil to Europe.

Under the deal, the oil will count towards offsetting outstanding debts and overdue dividends.

The US decision to allow the Europe-Venezuela oil trade comes after the US decided to ease sanctions to promote negotiations.

The European Union has taken a hit on energy security and prices as a consequence of the Russia-Ukraine War.

Moreover, the EU, under US leadership, imposed harsh sanctions on Russia and put a limit on Russian energy imports. However, Europe is having difficulty finding alternative sources.

In addition, the President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, expressed his views regarding the development.

He said, “The first steps that have been taken to establish communication with the US Government have been significant.”

“We will maintain our permanent demands for the lifting of all cruel and inhuman sanctions against the Venezuelan people,” he further proclaimed.

Sanctions against Venezuela

The US and the European countries have imposed harsh sanctions against Venezuela since the 2019 Presidential crisis.

The US, Europe, and some Latin American states do not recognize Nicolas Maduro as the de jure President of Venezuela. Instead, they recognize Juan Guaidó as the democratically elected acting President.

Venezuela has one of the world’s largest proven oil reserves which comprise 18% of all global reserves. The national oil company, the PDVSA, manages the country’s oil business.

Furthermore, Venezuela is a founding member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Meanwhile, the sanctions target persons related to the Maduro government and Venezuelan national institutions, including the national oil company.

However, in May, the US decided to ease some sanctions to bring contenders of Venezuelan leadership to the negotiating table.

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