Washington’s latest sanctions on Venezuela will not give the White House what it wants, according to the South American country’s close ally China.
On Friday, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order prohibiting Americans from dealing with new debt and equity issued by the Venezuelan government and by its state oil company PDVSA. The White House says the money supports President Nicolas Maduro’s “dictatorship.”
Beijing says the sanctions won’t work.
“The present problem in Venezuela should be resolved by the Venezuelan government and people themselves,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Monday at a daily news briefing.
“The experience of history shows that outside interference or unilateral sanctions will make the situation even more complicated and will not help resolve the actual problem,” Hua added.
China and Venezuela have extensive business links; oil being the largest, where the countries have a loan-for-oil deal.
Venezuela owes China more than $62 billion and is behind in the oil shipments.
Many analysts have said the loans from China and Russia have prevented Venezuela from default.
In August, Russian oil major Rosneft announced that it paid $6 billion to Venezuela’s PDVSA as an up-front payment for oil from the country.
In November 2016, Rosneft received a 49.9 percent stake in a Venezuelan-owned American refiner, transporter and marketer of transportation fuels Citgo as collateral.
American lawmakers have called it a big problem for US national security and sent a warning letter to President Donald Trump.
Trump has exempted Citgo from the recent round of sanctions. The White House has explained it as an attempt “to mitigate harm to the American and Venezuelan people.” In April, media reported that Citgo gave $500,000 to President Trump’s inauguration committee through a subsidiary.