Highlighting an allegedly corrupt, "oil-for-repression" relationship between Venezuela and Cuba, OFAC designated two companies involved in the transport of oil from Venezuela to Cuba pursuant to Executive Order 13850. According to OFAC, the companies are part of a "barter system" through which Venezuelan oil supplies are exchanged for Cuban political, intelligence, military and other forms of support. In addition to these designations, OFAC identified as blocked property:
- one vessel owned by one of the two designated companies that transported oil from Venezuela to Cuba; and
- over 30 vessels owned by Petróleos de Venezuela S.A., which was itself designated in January 2019.
As a result of this action, all property and interests of the two companies, and of any entities that are 50 percent or more owned by them, are blocked to the extent such property is in the United States or in the possession or control of a U.S. person. In addition, OFAC rules generally forbid all dealings by U.S. persons or within the United States that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated individuals and entities.
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