Venezuela's PDVSA to Operate Curacao Refinery for One More Year

Reuters, December 2, 2019

Venezuela’s state oil company PDVSA will operate Curacao’s 335,000 barrel-per-day Isla refinery for up to a year more, a spokesman for Curacao’s state refining company, Refineria di Koursou (RdK), said on Sunday. PDVSA’s contract to operate the refinery was set to expire at the end of this year. The spokesman described the agreement as a “transition” measure as RdK continued efforts to find a new operator.

RdK said in September that it had opened exclusive talks with industrial commodities conglomerate Klesch Group to operate the refinery. RdK said at the time that a definitive agreement would be reached by the end of November. Talks with Klesch are ongoing, the spokesman said.

Leaving Isla would be a further blow to PDVSA which has seen its crude output plunge by more than half since 2016 due to underinvestment and mismanagement, and more recently due to U.S. sanctions intended to force out Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. PDVSA President Manuel Quevedo, also Venezuela’s oil minister, visited Curacao in July to discuss the possibility of the company staying on to operate the refinery.

RdK officials met with Quevedo in Caracas on Saturday to discuss the transition arrangement, the company said in a statement, adding that the parties discussed the possibility of doing maintenance work on the refinery. Neither PDVSA nor Venezuela’s oil ministry immediately responded to requests for comment.

In May, the U.S. government issued a license allowing Curacao’s refinery to keep working with PDVSA through January 2020 despite the sanctions. RdK said in the statement that the license allowed for an additional transition period of up to a year during which the company can generate the revenue needed to maintain refining operations and pay workers, but not turn a profit.

(Reporting by Sailu Urribari; Additional Reporting and Writing by Luc Cohen; Editing by Daniel Wallis)

Click here to read the full article from Reuters.

Copyright 2024 Thomson Reuters. Click for restrictions.

Comments and Discussion

There are no comments yet.

Add a Comment

Please log in or register to participate in comments and discussions.

Inspectioneering Journal

Explore over 20 years of articles written by our team of subject matter experts.

Company Directory

Find relevant products, services, and technologies.

Training Solutions

Improve your skills in key mechanical integrity subjects.

Case Studies

Learn from the experience of others in the industry.


Inspectioneering's index of mechanical integrity topics – built by you.

Industry News

Stay up-to-date with the latest inspection and asset integrity management news.


Read short articles and insights authored by industry experts.

Expert Interviews

Inspectioneering's archive of interviews with industry subject matter experts.

Event Calendar

Find upcoming conferences, training sessions, online events, and more.


Downloadable eBooks, Asset Intelligence Reports, checklists, white papers, and more.

Videos & Webinars

Watch educational and informative videos directly related to your profession.


Commonly used asset integrity management and inspection acronyms.