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Venezuelan opposition reshuffles boards in a move to gain greater influence over Houston-based oil refiner Citgo

June 08/2021

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Venezuela's political opposition has replaced members of the boards overseeing Citgo Petroleum Corp as factions in the movement led by Juan Guaido try to gain greater influence over Houston-based oil refiner, reported Reuters.

Citgo split from Venezuelan state-run oil company PDVSA in 2019 after the US imposed sanctions intended to oust Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro. Then congress chief Juan Guaido appointed new boards and won US court recognition of their authority over the refining subsidiary.

Tuesday's shakeup introduced five new appointees tied to different opposition parties, some of them the sons of former PDVSA executives.

Chief Executive Carlos Jorda was replaced at the boards of Citgo Petroleum and parent company Citgo Holding. Citgo operating chief Edgar Rincon also stepped down from the board of Citgo Holding, according to a statement by the Guaido-led assembly.

Jorda and Rincon remain in their executive roles, a Citgo spokeswoman said.

The National Assembly statement did not provide a reason for the moves, which come after several previous management changes at the company. Citgo has lost hundreds of million dollars over six of the last eight quarters amid pandemic-related demand declines and storm shutdowns.

Factions within the National Assembly have been fighting for influence at Citgo since last year. Some lawmakers have sought to require Citgo pay dividends to holding companies Citgo Holding and PDV Holding, a move Jorda long opposed, according to people familiar with the matter.

Venezuelan businessman Luis Giusti Lugo, the son of a former PDVSA president, will replace CEO Jorda on the Citgo Petroleum board, while Ernesto Hernandez Bolivar will replace Pablo Perez on the same board, the statement said.

Samuel Wilhelm Belloso, the son of a former PDVSA executive, and Elio Tortolero Arevalo are joining the Citgo Holding board, replacing Jorda and COO Rincon. Hernandez Bolivar will fill the seat vacated on that board by Luisa Palacios in October.

Wilhelm Belloso and Andres Arvelo Guerrero also joined the PDV Holding ad-hoc board that oversees Citgo.

As MRC wrote before, in September 2020, Citgo Petroleum Corp said it did not plan to idle its 418,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Lake Charles, Louisiana, refinery damaged by Hurricane Laura. Rumors have circulated since Lauras passage over the Lake Charles area on Aug. 27 that Citgo was considering shutting the refinery for an indefinite period because of the extent of the damage and continuing low demand for motor fuels in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 744,130 tonnes in the first four month of 2021, up by 4% year on year. Shipments of all PE grades increased. At the same time, PP deliveries to the Russian market were 523,900 tonnes in January-April 2021, up by 55% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased, whereas shipments of PP random copolymers decreased.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:PP, PE, crude and gaz condensate, PP block copolymer, homopolymer PP, PP random copolymer, propylene, ethylene, petrochemistry, Citgo petroleum corporation, Venezuela, Russia, USA.
Category:General News
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