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In January 2019 the Trump administration announced tough sanctions against PDVSA, designed to halt US imports of Venezuelan crude. The US government also blocked access to its financial system for PDVSA transactions. Overall, sanctions have had the desired effect. Crude trade to US refineries came to a halt since February, down from approximately 0.5 million b/d in 2018. US also stopped exporting clean petroleum products (CPP) to Venezuela, most notably naphtha, used to dilute extra heavy grades to make synthetic crude for exports. Venezuela was largely unable to find a replacement for US clean products, with the volume of CPP imports into the country down by more than 50% compared to levels in 2018.
The weekly tanker market report by Gibson Shipbrokers.
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