Saturday, August 10, 2019

Washington-imposed sanctions amount to nothing short of an embargo on Venezuela

The important feature of the sanctions the Trump administration just imposed on Venezuela is not that they freeze Venezuelan government assets in the U.S. or prohibit transactions with the Venezuelan government – Trump’s executive orders did that in the past. The key feature is the ambiguity of the sanctions. Any private company anyplace in the world will be reluctant to trade with a private Venezuelan company because if it turns out that the Venezuelan company has dealings with the Maduro government, then the foreign company can be placed on a blacklist of the U.S. Department of Commerce or Treasury and possibly have their assets frozen. Furthermore, it has been proven even by anti-Chavista analysts that U.S. banks lack the capacity to determine whether Venezuelan companies have ties with the Venezuelan government. Since most international commerce and other transactions take place in dollars, U.S. banks act as go-betweens; thus U.S. banks, rather than the U.S. government, end up vetoing a large number of commercial transactions with Venezuela. In short, Washington's sanctions amount to nothing short of an embargo on Venezuela.
The actions of top members of the Trump administration such as Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Pompeo foster this ambiguity. They have publicly announced probes into the shadow companies that Maduro allegedly controls and in doings to scare companies throughout the world from dealing with Venezuela in any shape or form. 
I made these points in an interview today on China Global CGTN.


At August 12, 2019 at 1:06 PM , Blogger Nando Troyani said...

To short. To bad.


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