Chevron CEO Mike Wirth on Tuesday said the company is committed to working with U.S. authorities to reach a resolution that will allow it to remain active in Venezuela despite economic sanctions levied against the oil-rich nation.
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The United States is one of more than 40 countries that have formally recognized Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s rightful leader and called on President Nicolas Maduro to step down after contested election results. The Trump administration has issued economic sanctions that ban U.S. companies from doing business with Venezuelan assets controlled by the Maduro regime, including the state-run oil company PDVSA, which has ties to Chevron.
“Our strong intent is to stay on the ground in Venezuela and be part of building a better future for the people of Venezuela,” Wirth told Bloomberg. “We’ve got a very close coordination under way with multiple agencies within the U.S. government.”
Chevron is one of multiple U.S. oil firms who have received permission to continue operations in Venezuela until July 27. Wirth reportedly declined Bloomberg’s request for comment on whether Chevron considered that date a hard deadline to withdraw from the country.
Reuters reported on Tuesday that PDVSA is pressuring its U.S. partners to decide whether they plan to maintain their stakes in local oil projects despite the sanctions. Chevron is the largest U.S. oil company firm in the region.
“We work closely with the U.S. government to understand how their policy objectives are being manifest through the sanctions they have issued and to ensure we remain in full compliance with U.S. law,” Wirth said, adding that Chevron is “neutral” on whether Guaido or Maduro should be Venezuela’s president.