U.S. Ambassador Carlos Vecchio reported that on Thursday the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) issued new regulations on Venezuelan-linked sanctions that strengthen and clarify the prohibition against executing any embargo, or embargo or liquidation agreement, further protecting CITGO assests and other Venezuelan assets.
“This clarification and strengthening of U.S. protection measures on CITGO is an achievement of the interim government of President Juan Guaidó to permanently secure the assets of the Venezuelan state that have been illegally and irresponsibly compromised by the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro, which has put the nation’s patrimony at risk,” noted Ambassador Vecchio.
The new U.S. Treasury measure, effective November 22nd, 2019, specifies that “the entry into a settlement agreement or the enforcement of any lien, judgment, arbitration award, decree or other order by execution, seizure or other judicial process that purports to transfer or alter or affect property or interests in the blocked property (…) is prohibited unless authorized pursuant to a specific license issued by OFAC in agreement to this part.
In addition and to ensure that the rule was understandable to all actors, OFAC provides an explanatory guide stating that “the interpretative provision clarifies that, notwithstanding the existence of any general license issued (…) the entry into a settlement agreement or the enforcement of any lien, judgment, arbitral award, decree or other order by execution, attachment or other judicial process that seeks to transfer or alter or affect the ownership interest in the blocked property (…) is prohibited unless authorized pursuant to a specific licensing problem by OFAC”.
The Venezuelan Ambassador reiterated that “today CITGO continues to belong to Venezuelans because there is a legitimate government of Interim President Juan Guaidó, a government that has managed to secure with the support of allies the Venezuelan assets that the dictator put at extreme risk, generating profound suffering for millions of Venezuelans and an unprecedented humanitarian crisis while the regime’s officials stole millions of dollars.”
He added, “We will continue to work in all the instances necessary to recover and protect all the assets of the Venezuelan people, but especially to get out of Maduro’s corrupt and criminal dictatorship as soon as possible.”