Venezuela tightens grip on fuel stations after subsidy reform

Venezuela tightens grip on fuel stations after subsidy reform
Cars are parked in line near a gas station with subsidized fuel in Caracas. (Reuters)
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Updated 29 June 2020

Venezuela tightens grip on fuel stations after subsidy reform

Venezuela tightens grip on fuel stations after subsidy reform
  • Removal of licenses will likely allow the state to take the benefit of higher pump prices

CARACAS: Venezuelan state oil firm PDVSA has told independent gas station operators it can revoke their licenses “at any time,” only weeks after it cut generous fuel subsidies and as widespread shortages take hold, a notification PDVSA sent to the operators showed.

PDVSA has a monopoly over the wholesale fuel distribution market and owns almost all of the country’s 1,200 service stations, although most are operated by private companies through commercial licenses.

Many are suffering the effects of years of price freezes that prevented fuel sales income from keeping up with the costs of maintaining their stations.

The industry had hoped the subsidy reforms and resulting price rises could revive their businesses, but the removal of licenses could allow the state to take the benefit of higher pump prices.

The notification document says PDVSA “will be able to rescind the contract unilaterally and at any time.” A person familiar with the process, who asked not to be named, said so far 12 gas stations in Caracas had received the notification.

The shift is a new sign of the desperation of President Nicolas Maduro’s government for hard currency as the COVID-19 pandemic and US sanctions have reduced Venezuela’s capacity to earn export revenue from
oil shipments.


Tadawul slips 0.3%, Anaam Holding falls, SARCO soars

Updated 02 December 2020

Tadawul slips 0.3%, Anaam Holding falls, SARCO soars

Tadawul slips 0.3%, Anaam Holding falls, SARCO soars
  • Tadawul All Share Index falls to below 8,700 points, turnover at $3.14bn

Saudi equities extended their losses, with benchmark Tadawul All Share Index (TASI) slipping 0.3 percent, or 28 points, to close at 8,694 points on Wednesday.

Total turnover reached SAR 11.8 billion ($3.14 billion), with advance-decline ratio at 52:131.

The shares of Almarai Co., Saudi Telecom Co., Riyadh Bank, Banque Saudi Fransi, Yansab and Zain Saudi ended trading today with declines between 1 percent and 2 percent.

Anaam Holding was the top decliner as it went limit down to SAR 154.20. The Securities Depository Center Co. (Edaa) deposited today, Dec. 2, the subscribed securities of Anaam International Holding Group to the accounts of eligible securities' holders.

On the other hand, SARCO went limit up to SAR 105.6 amid trading volume of 6.3 million shares.

Al-Omran shares recorded their highest close since listing, rising 10 percent to SAR 108.8.

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