Venezuela’s Vice President Delcy Rodriguez has said President Nicolas Maduro has ordered the European headquarters of state oil company PDVSA be relocated to Russia.

Iran Press/America: Speaking on Friday at a joint news conference with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, during her visit to Moscow, Venezuela’s Vice President Delcy Rodriguez said: “President Maduro ordered to close the Lisbon office of PDVSA and move it to Moscow.”

According to an RT report, Rodriguez said: “It’s the perfect time, as we are reshaping our relations.” 

The decision comes as Venezuela expands energy cooperation with Russia’s oil and gas giants Gazprom and Rosneft.

Over recent months, there has been a battle over Venezuela’s oil industry, which contributes greatly to the country’s budget. The United States has sanctioned PDVSA in an attempt to cut off funds to the Maduro-led government while giving support to the opposition led by Juan Guaido. President Maduro broke diplomatic ties with the US after the country recognized Guaido as interim president of Venezuela.

In late January, the US froze $7 billion of assets belonging to PDVSA and its US subsidiary Citgo. Guaido pledged to appoint an alternative board of directors for both PDVSA itself and Citgo as well.

According to Vice President Rodriguez, Venezuela is planning to broaden the country’s trading opportunities.

“We will purchase food and medicines necessary for our people from Russia,” she said.

Caracas will continue attracting investments into the Venezuelan economy with the help of the Russian government, said Rodriguez, stressing that Russia is an important strategic partner.

Russia and Venezuela have agreed to increase trade and investment in industries and finance as part of agreements signed in December during President Maduro’s visit to Moscow, according to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Lavrov said: “Russia will further help the Venezuelan government to solve social and economic problems, which includes lending support via legitimate humanitarian aid.”    211 /101


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