The Petrocaribe program is to be cut back following cuts into Venezuela’s domestic earnings. The program which was started in 2005 has seen millions of dollars into GOB reserves. World oil prices that continue to dip is forcing Venezuela to take drastic measures and will be selling the debt to investment banks at rather big discounts to keep cash flow. Under the program, the country is owed about twenty billion dollars. So with Venezuela being forced to securitize the 3.5 billion dollar a year Petrocaribe debt some countries will be affected but Belize has not yet been named. Nonetheless, changes under the program will happen, says Prime Minister Dean Barrow.


 

Screen_Shot_2014-12-09_at_7.46.51_PMHonorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize


 

What I am concerned about is I don’t know if you have been told but PDVSA has indicated that they will no longer be able to supply us with Premium…I think starting either now but certainly by the end of the year. So in effect that is a cutback of the program. I believe that the amount of premium is only about fifteen percent of the total volumes that we get, but it clearly represents a rollback and as I’ve indicated on the last occasion I utterly and completely understand. What we will do to try and make up some of that thirteen or fifteen percent loss, whatever it is, is to have certainly government vehicles only use Regular. People who know say to me that that’s marketing – Premium being better than Regular but that is a form of rollback in terms of securitization it doesn't matter to me who we pay back to.”


Reporter


"Under the plan, you can pay with rice theoretically."


Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize


"But we haven't. We've been paying cash and it's taken us a while to work out the bartering thing and so if we can't work it out now, it's not a big deal. We are happy to service the debt by a way of cash."


Reporter


"And if they were to securitize it, I can't imagine the new owner of the debt would be agreeable to a 1% interest rate which is what it currently is at."


Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize


 

"Well, we will have to see what the deal is with that sort of thing. Clearly there are changes and I am saying that we are prepared to deal with the changes. It has been a lovely run. If it comes to an end, certainly it's in its current form, we will roll with the punches."


 

With immediate effect, Belize will no longer receive Premium fuel from Venezuela.

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