The U.S. State Department has not warned or notified BP in any way about its role as a substantial shareholder in Russia’s Rosneft after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused Rosneft of buying Venezuelan crude despite U.S. sanctions against the country, TASS reports.
“I haven’t read it, I haven’t heard it, so I really wouldn’t be able to comment,” Dudley said on the sidelines of CERAWeek. “I did not actually hear about that.”
Earlier this week, Mike Pompeo accused Rosneft of defying U.S. sanctions against Caracas by continuing to buy crude oil from PDVSA, which is its joint venture partner in a local operation.
The Russian company responded by saying it was engaged in business and not politics, adding its contracts for the purchase of Venezuelan crude were signed before the sanctions against PDVSA were enforced. What’s more, Rosneft said it will evaluate the consequences of Pompeo’s statement, TASS reported yesterday and would defend its rights if it finds these have been adverse.
The U.S. Secretary of State on Monday said Russia and Cuba were to blame for the crisis in Venezuela because of their continued support for the Maduro government.
“This story is not complete without acknowledging the central role Cuba and Russia have played and continue to play in undermining the democratic dreams of the Venezuelan people and their welfare,” Reuters quoted Pompeo as saying.
“Moscow, like Havana, continues to provide political cover to the Maduro regime, while pressuring countries to disregard the democratic legitimacy of the interim president Guaido,” the U.S. Secretary of State also said.
The part of his statement that rattled Rosneft went as follows: “Russia’s state-owned company, Rosneft, continues to purchase crude oil cargoes from PDVSA, Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, in defiance of U.S. sanctions. And, Rosneft’s CEO, Igor Sechin, continues to throw a lifeline to the regime.”