Venezuela Sanctions

May 2018

Venezuelan Flag iStock 177761120sm

On 21 May 2018 Donald Trump issued Executive Order 13835, prohibiting certain additional transactions with respect to Venezuela, following on from Executive Orders 13692, 13808 and 13827. The new EO is issued ‘in light of the recent activities of the Maduro regime, including endemic economic mismanagement and public corruption at the expense of the Venezuelan people and their prosperity, and ongoing repression of the political opposition; attempts to undermine democratic order by holding snap elections that are neither free nor fair; and the regime’s responsibility for the deepening humanitarian and public health crisis in Venezuela’.

Save as otherwise licensed or authorised, the EO prohibits:

All transactions related to, provision of financing for, and other dealings in the following by a US person or within the US:

(i) the purchase of any debt owed to the Government of Venezuela, including accounts receivable;
(ii) any debt owed to the Government of Venezuela that is pledged as collateral after the effective date of this order, including accounts receivable;
and
(iii) the sale, transfer, assignment, or pledging as collateral by the Government of Venezuela of any equity interest in any entity in which the Government of Venezuela has a 50 percent or greater ownership interest.

Also prohibited are:

(i) any transaction that evades or avoids, has the purpose of evading or avoiding, causes a violation of, or attempts to violate any of the prohibitions; and

(ii) any conspiracy formed to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in the EO.

The prohibitions extend to "financing" or "any other dealings" with regards to all such transactions.

The prohibitions apply to US persons and all transactions within the US.

For the purposes of the EO the term ‘‘Government of Venezuela’’ means the Government of Venezuela, any political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including the Central Bank of Venezuela and Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PdVSA), and any person owned or controlled by, or acting for or on behalf of, the Government of Venezuela.

On 18 May 2018 OFAC also updated its SDN list, designating four new individuals and three new entities with a Venezuelan nexus.

Executive Order 13835 can be found here.

The new Venezuelan designations can be found here.