A former President of the Saint Lucia Petroleum Dealers Association has suggested that the United States may have scored an ‘own goal’ in the imposition of oil sanctions on Venezuela.
In an interview with St Lucia Times, Everistus Jn Marie noted that a huge portion of Venezuelan exports are destined for the US market.
“In many ways it is sort of an own goal for the United States to place an embargo on Venezuelan oil products,” Jn Marie stated.
Oil sanctions imposed by the United States are expected to severely hit an already battered Venezuela economy.
But the United States is Venezuela’s largest crude importer, ahead of India and China.
According to reports, new measures announced by the US limit transactions between American companies and the Venezuela state oil company, PDSVA.
“41 percent of Venezuela’s exports are destined for the US market, so that any disruption is likely to cause a supply issue and cause the price of oil to spike and by extension, the price of petroleum products to go up in the United States,” Everistus Jn Marie told St Lucia Times.
As he spoke, National Public Radio (NPR) reported Wednesday that Oil prices were up more than 2 percent after the U.S. imposed sanctions on PSDVA.
However, Jn Marie expressed the view that there would be no immediate direct impact on the price of fuel in Saint Lucia from the crisis in Venezuela, since this country’s supplies of petroleum products come out of Trinidad and Tobago.
“However, in a world that is so interconnected these things do have implications far beyond the immediate points of influence,” the former President of the Petroleum Dealers Association explained.
“The problem for us here – I don’t know if you are aware that since October 2018 Petrotrin has stopped refining finished products for the region. In fact they are totally out of commission and have been importing their products from the United States, he observed.
“So it means that any increase in the price of oil and the associated final products that go up to the US will have implications for Trinidad and have implications for us,” according to Jn Marie.
“Although the consequences are not direct, but they eventually will affect us somewhere down the road,” he stated.