CNE authority, Luis Emilio Rondón, demanded the activation of the Automatic Candidacies System so that candidates for governor can be replaced on the ballot as established by the Law of Electoral Processes, reminding his colleagues that the CNE must guarantee that candidacies are known to the public, to avoid null votes.

Yesterday morning, the head of the AN Interior Policy Committee, Lawmaker Delsa Solórzano, submitted before the CNE a Parliament-approved resolution demanding the CNE to comply with the law and replace the candidates.

Regionales Unidad is the app launched by MUD to inform citizens about our polling stations, voting tables and electoral ballots, a way of confronting the CNE’s opacity.

Commissioner

Imposed prosecutor general Tarek William Saab reported on the investigations and detentions carried out by the Prosecutor’s Office, remarking that 18 companies have been audited for the Cadivi-Cencoex case, although 13 of them don’t have a main office – they’re “ghosts” – and claiming that they received $85 million in subsidized dollar allocations. He described the raid on Azucarera Río Turbio C.A., which received $156 million “preferential dollars” between 2014-2017, and brought about an arrest warrant against its legal representative, Ricardo Peña.

They managed to arrest the owner of Importaciones Constructora VJL, José Báez. Saab also spoke of the arrest of five PDVSA Monagas officials for dismantling over 600 vehicles owned by the company. Also, three companies that were awarded contracts in the Orinoco Oil Strip – linked with mixed company PetroCedeño – were raided as part of the investigation, to establish whether their contracts show any overpricing, but funny enough, none of the alleged culprits live in Venezuela right now, although in theory, Interpol will issue red alerts for their arrest.

World power

Fedecámaras chair, Carlos Larrazábal, highlighted the national business owner’s concerns regarding the delay in foreign currency grants: “There was an agreement with suppliers but they’ve not been granted the dollars of previous auctions,” adding that without foreign currency offers or a transparent and secure exchange market, the only option left is the black market.

But they’re not the only ones who are concerned.

People investing in Venezuelan bonds are bracing for a coming five-week period where the government will face maturities of$3,5 billion debt, according to Bloomberg, pointing out that unlike the most recent transactions, where grace periods allowed the government to avoid default, coming periods have no such complacencies, such as PDVSA’s $842 million due on October 27th, and the $1,1 billion for a bond that expires on November 2nd.

A detail: for the first time in many years, crude shipments to the U.S. dropped below half a million daily barrels, according to Reuters.

Let’s talk of conspiracies

Vice-president Tareck el Aissami announced the arrest of Manuel Chacín Díaz, whom he accused of terrorism, claiming that he’d been issued an arrest warrant last year, accused of intentional homicide, aggravated robbery and criminal association.

According to El Aissami, this man was getting his orders from Óscar Pérez – the former CICPC Special Forces (BAE) agent and swoon-inducing helicopter pilot, wanted since June of this year – and frequently talked on the phone with Leopoldo López, so he accused political party Voluntad Popular of recruiting young criminals to carry out “terrorist actions.”

Cynicism reared its head when El Aissami spoke of potential sabotage in public services to cause chaos and rekindle street protests, as if the suspension of power, water and gas supplies required outside intervention.

The accused party responded to El Aissami with a statement out of which this line is noteworthy:

“Voluntad Popular’s activists and leaders are not precisely the ones leading in OFAC sanctions, which shows that several government officials have proven links with drug trafficking and international terrorism.“

Shameless

Interior minister Néstor Reverol submitted a report before the ANC to review the progress made in terms of security policy and claimed that the training of the Armed Forces and the National Bolivarian Police prevented thousands of deaths during the months of protests.

He said that 71% of the 1,455 people injured during protests were military officers.

It’s not strange for him to say that he won’t stop congratulating security bodies “for their bravery and courage to guarantee peace in the country.”

According to Reverol, criminal activity this year dropped by 18.7%, the problem still lies in “the perception of security.”

He also submitted the constituent bill for Peace Quadrants. Sadly, he didn’t talk about the 439 political prisoners or about how the hearing for one of them, Mayor Delson Guárate, was postponed for a tenth time yesterday.

Meanwhile, the hearing for the presidential couple’s narconephews concluded. The defense made several requests that were dismissed by the  judge and they’re likely to get a definitive sentence on December 14th.

Teodoro, the reference

While Nicolás recorded videos with a copy of the World Atlas to give some context to his tour through Russia, Belarus and Turkey, with a stop in Algeria – the second in three weeks – during which he took pictures with the Senate Speaker for Instagram, it was reported that the Inter American Bar Association (IABA) suspended Hermann Escarrá for being in the OFAC List and also, the black market dollar surpassed the Bs. 29,000 mark.

But last night in Buenos Aires, Teodoro Petkoff, head of TalCual, was recognized with the Premio Perfil a la Libertad de Expresión Internacional award. Although he couldn’t attend the ceremony, the host of the event said that this prize rewards “the effort of those who are able to speak out for those who have no voice and celebrate differences of opinion, as well as creative, open and pluralist debate,” adding that Teodoro is one of the strongest critics against the authoritarian methods developed in Venezuela.

Teodoro showed his gratitude for the award with a text read in the ceremony: “I want to thank Perfil de América for this award to free speech, not for me but for TalCual (…) we’ve tried to be the bastion of free speech and the defense of the rights of Venezuelans (…) I’m certain this honorable prize will contribute to turn the world’s eyes to Venezuela in this difficult moment in its history.” And I add “Amen”.

11 COMMENTS

  1. We just watched Saab reporting on the arrests of PDVSA reps in Monagas and my woman says, “the corruption in PDVSA has now gotten so large they can no longer sweep it under the rug”.

    Dismantling 600 company cars. Try to wrap your brain around that one.

  2. A detail: for the first time in many years, crude shipments to the U.S. dropped below half a million daily barrels, according to Reuters.

    Here are some annual import figures up to 2016, and monthly import for 2017. This shows that daily shipments to the US of below 500,000 BOPD crude is a big drop. As the US is probably Venezuela’s biggest paying customer, this will mean more cashflow problems for Venezuela.

    Annual average:
    U.S. Imports from Venezuela of Crude Oil (Thousand Barrels per Day)
    1998 1377
    1999 1150
    2000 1223
    2001 1291
    2002 1201
    2003 1183
    2004 1297
    2005 1241
    2006 1142
    2007 1148
    2008 1039
    2009 951
    2010 912
    2011 868
    2012 912
    2013 755
    2014 733
    2015 776
    2016 741

    For 2017:U.S. Imports from Venezuela of Crude Oil (Thousand Barrels per Day)
    Jan-17 704
    Feb-17 679
    Mar-17 701
    Apr-17 812
    May-17 708
    Jun-17 616
    Jul-17 655

    US Energy Information Administration.

  3. 44 gallons of crude in a barrel, times 655,000 still equals 27.5 million gallons of crude a day is still going to the US. Granted it has to be refined and mixed with lighter grade stuff and additives, but that’s still a hell of a lot of product coming from a supposedly shitcanned industry.

  4. U.S. Imports from Venezuela of Crude Oil and Petroleum Products (Thousand Barrels)

    Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep

    2008 39,569 32,810 32,009 35,672 36,304 36,436 41,206 40,459 31,543 36,018 37,071 35,932

    2009 41,950 31,905 34,274 26,725 35,364 37,686 30,252 33,178 34,392 29,619 26,205 26,306

    2010 28,232 28,285 32,878 28,523 34,635 26,976 33,590 31,669 30,235 28,828 28,245 28,430

    2011 31,924 27,701 33,024 30,260 31,482 32,519 29,576 28,328 24,181 28,072 23,008 26,914

    2012 23,293 27,088 30,496 27,134 26,683 23,829 33,469 32,478 31,141 29,494 32,275 33,840

    2013 28,310 17,205 24,202 25,966 22,896 26,958 28,936 21,021 25,122 23,518 23,869 26,256

    2014 21,290 22,592 23,926 25,600 23,922 22,448 27,946 26,874 24,721 21,753 23,994 23,061

    2015 20,781 21,921 26,326 24,734 27,834 22,697 25,054 28,959 25,658 24,877 25,281 27,867

    2016 21,748 22,431 26,228 23,654 24,400 22,439 28,936 23,962 24,760 22,976 25,461 24,466

    2017 23,227 21,022 23,684 25,698 23,764 19,901 21,259

    At 21,259 barrels for July, 2017, that’s still 1.1 BILLION gallons of crude. A shitload.

    • but that’s still a hell of a lot of product coming from a supposedly shitcanned industry

      I am reminded of that quote attributed to Senator Everett Dirksen: “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking about real money.” Adam Smith also comes to mind: “There is a lot of ruin in a country.”
      Yes, we are dealing with mega-money amounts here. The point is that the petrodollar cashflow is much reduced. In 2012, Venezuelan crude sold for $100.15/BBL in the US, which would amount to $33.3 billion in revenue. In 2016, Venezuelan crude sold for $34.71/BBL in the US, which would amount to $9.4 billion, a reduction of nearly 72% from 2012. The price of oil is up in 2017- $43 vs. $34, with US sales up about 32% for Jan-July 2017 compared to Jan-July 3016.

      https://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/hist/LeafHandler.ashx?n=pet&s=ive0000004&f=m

      • My thoughts exactly BT, that they’ve experienced the worst of both worlds, dramatically declining price coupled with dramatically declining production. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch.

        • Unfortunately, those who are responsible for declining production and the ruin of PDVSA are suffering much less than the run-of-the-mill Juan Bimbo.

  5. Supertanker capacity varies, but Wikipedia says most carry about 2 million barrels. That means to get 25.259 million barrels of oil to US ports every month, it takes roughly 11 or 12 supertankers to do the job, so despite the horror stories of tankers laying off port for months, and so forth, there’s a regular conga line of tankers coming to and fro. At 50 bucks a barrel, that generates about 1.25 BILLION dollars a month for Venezuela. With that kind of coin still rolling in, no wonder the government is not backing down, and the military is right there with them. Can you imagine what a proper accounting of those monies might look like?

  6. Transforming barrels into gallons to make it look as if the volume of crude sold to the US is enormous is very silly , gallons are not used in the oil trade to measure shipments , its the kind of thing absolutely ignorant people do but not oil business professionals or economists…., also size of tankers making the Venezuela US trade (mostly gulf refineries) are limited by the size of the terminals so its also silly to mention tanker sizes.

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