Venezuela is making a last-ditch effort to limit the number of companies that could participate in a stock auction ordered by a court in a matrix of the oil refinery Citgo Petroleum, Appeal to the US Supreme Court to set aside the verdict by a lower court, Reuters reports.
About two dozen companies, including ConocoPhillips (COP.N), Exxon Mobil (XOM.N) and Tenaris SA (TENR.MI), are seeking to settle claims against Venezuela or state-owned oil company PDVSA by selling stakes in PDV Holding to get the parent companies of Citgo. Lawsuits worth around $20 billion are pending.
The decision of the Court of First Instance that Pdvsa is the “alter ego” of Venezuela“It poses a very real risk that petitioner PDVSA’s key asset in the United States — the shares through which it indirectly owns 100% of Citgo Petroleum Corporation — will be sold by next summer,” the statement filed Wednesday said Petition.
Venezuela is asking the Supreme Court to find the lower court’s ‘alter ego’ decision flawed. The Third Circuit last month upheld a ruling clearing the way for six companies to pursue claims totaling $3.4 billion in an ongoing lawsuit.
Petitioning goes a long way as around 90% of these petitions are rejected by the court. That doesn’t affect mining company Crystallex International’s lawsuit against Venezuela, whose claim for $970 million led to the proposed stock auction.
The The motion stipulates that the pleadings be submitted by September 15, shortly before the scheduled auction begins.adds Reuters.
Citgo is the seventh largest oil refiner in the United States with a retail network of more than 4,400 retail stores and processing plants in Illinois, Louisiana and Texas. A Delaware court judge set October 23 as the start date for the auction.
The Houston-based company separated from PDVSA in 2019according to what The US imposed sanctions It aimed to overthrow President Nicolás Maduro and was under the control of an oversight body responsible for overseeing the country’s foreign assets.