US sanctions against Venezuela and its attempt to oust President Maduro appear to have gone onto the back burner as a result of the conflict in Ukraine, which added Russia – another major exporter of oil – to the US’s lengthening sanctions list.
Nearly a quarter of Venezuelan crude exports were now heading to the US, according to a report from broker Braemar. The easing of US sanctions has resulted in a significant shift in tanker trading patterns in the western hemisphere.
Venezuela’s state-owned oil and gas company, PDVSA, aims to reach 1m barrels per day of crude production this year, up from an average of 716,000 barrels per day in 2022. However, the components of the Venezuelan tanker fleet are in many cases not fit for trading, reported Reuters, citing internal documents seen in May. More than half of the 22 tankers in state-run oil company PDVSA needed urgent repairs or were not in a state to trade, according to an internal report by the oil firm.
The long-running sanctions by the US against Venezuela has caused many vessels to fall into disrepair.