Venezuela's Maduro dismisses default possibility on eve of debt talks

Reuters
Reuters
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15 Noviembre, 2017

Last week, the government failed to make payment on time for a small bond issued by a state electrical company.

Venezuela has been in a massive recession since Maduro succeeded the late president Hugo Chavez in 2013.

Last Thursday, the U.S. imposed financial sanctions on 10 current and former Venezuelan officials because of corruption and abuse of power allegations related to Maduro's crackdown on the opposition.

He specified that the irregularities had been detected during inspections by attorneys of the Attorney General's Office (MP), supported by the board of directors of the military counter-intelligence department (Digecim) and President Nicolas Maduro, in the states of Anzoategui, Monagas, Caracas, Falcon and the Oriente area. "(We) will always have a clear strategy and right now that strategy is to renegotiate and refinance the foreign debt". According to the Venezuelan law, those arrested are accused of non-compliance with the special security-area regime, self-fraudulent embezzlement and association to commit an offense. A drop in oil prices has contributed to a galloping shortage of basic goods in the cash-strapped country, where inflation is expected to reach 1,000 percent this year. "Tomorrow we begin the first round of renegotiation and refinancing of Venezuela's debt".

The head of the committee charged with negotiating a deal, Vice President Tareck El Aissami, is one of the politicians targeted by US sanctions, with Washington accusing El Aissami of drug trafficking.

By the end of Friday's workday, Dallen said, one of several U.S. investors he represents told him he couldn't get a visa on such short notice and another reported planning to send an intern, citing the lack of information.

The EU sanctions came after the bloc declared that it would not recognize Venezuela's Constituent Assembly, a chamber of loyalists appointed by Maduro in August designed to usurp parliamentary powers. "There's nothing. Just crickets". However, there had been earlier reports that some of the creditors would not be able to attend the meeting amid concern that the delegation of Venezuelan negotiators could include people who are presently under US sanctions. "What happens is that international banks hide the funds that have already been deposited - they hide them", Maduro said.


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