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The Biden administration is reportedly preparing to ease sanctions on Venezuela’s authoritarian rule, paving the way for Chevron to resume oil operations and reopen US and European markets.
People close to the proposal told the Wall Street Journal that any sanctions relief depends on talks between the government of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro and the country’s opposition regarding free and fair presidential elections in 2024. So far, these talks did not materialize.
Talks of possible sanctions relief on Venezuela come as President Biden faces mounting political pressure to address rising gasoline prices ahead of November’s midterms. It also comes as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC+) said it would cut oil production by 2 million barrels a day, creating another headache for the president.
Such a deal between the United States and Venezuela could potentially enrage critics on all sides. Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido has asked the US government for details about Chevron’s request for an expanded license to operate in the country.
Still, it remains to be seen whether a pivot to Venezuela would alleviate rising fuel costs in the United States. Once a major oil producer, pumping more than 3.2 million barrels a day in the 1990s, the Venezuela’s ramshackle oil industry has been plagued by years of corruption. , mismanagement and environmental degradation, according to reports from oilprice.com.
“The Democrats currently have a harder story to sell on this because of course there is inflation. Of course there are supply chain issues. But when it comes specifically to oil, they’ve been so publicly anti-American that when you start hearing there’s not enough of it, those two dots aren’t very hard to connect,” said Ryan Sitton, a former oil regulator from Texas. , at FOX Business. “So Biden is clearly trying to do everything he can to keep oil prices down, and thereby help keep gas prices down, so that it doesn’t hit them so hard in the medium term.”
Read more about the story here: Biden admin seeks to reduce sanctions on Venezuela and allow more pumping of world’s dirtiest oil