THE REASONS FOR THE US PRESSURE ON CARACAS
Despite the latest material estimates of oil and gas reserves, Venezuela is very difficult to call the main storehouse of world energy. Venezuela’s official oil and gas reserves are controversial
The fact is that the head of Rosneft Igor Sechin said that the situation around Venezuela indicates the «burning interest» of the US to take control of the energy wealth of Venezuela, which correlates with the recent appeal to the Americans of Nicolas Maduro.
Recall that the Venezuelan President wrote an appeal to the American nation, in which he noted that the activities of Washington against his country due to the fact that it has the world’s largest oil reserves. This is how Venezuela is positioned today, although if you look at Venezuelan hydrocarbons, most of them belong to hard-to-recover reserves.
And this significantly hinders the development of the Venezuelan oil and gas sector, because production in some fields is unprofitable from the point of view of the economy, which is why, despite the huge reserves, Venezuela has been constantly reducing its oil production for several years.
This is due to the fact that oil and gas production in this country requires significant investments, which Venezuela simply does not have, and external investors look back at the system of sanctions that Washington and its geopolitical allies used against Caracas.
«The main part of the reserves in Venezuela is really hard to recover. At the same time, Venezuela together with Canada are three States that have fundamentally changed the approach to the assessment of national oil and gas reserves,» Frolov concludes.
As the expert notes, these were the first three countries that began to take into account in their statistics not only traditional oil and gas reserves but also non-traditional ones. And this eventually led to the fact that Venezuela became the first state in the world in oil and gas reserves.
«Just if you extend this approach to all countries that have hydrocarbon reserves, you immediately realize that Venezuela is currently a statistical exception with its official data,» Frolov sums up.
It’s just that most of the Venezuelan reserves do exist, but from an economic point of view their production is unprofitable, and, therefore, the accounting of such deposits is rhetorical. In practice, it makes no sense to take into account in statistics what cannot yet make a profit, and this is the case with the majority of Venezuelan hard-to-recover oil and gas reserves.
«It is for this reason that oil production in Venezuela fell from 3.5 million barrels to 1-1.5, and this is due to the fact that due to low prices on the world market, investments in most projects of the Venezuelan oil and gas industry stopped,» Frolov States.
Of course, us factor plays here, which has taken unprecedented aggressive actions against Venezuela, which is why oil production in this country has sunk even more in the last six months, but without it, it continued to decline for economic reasons.
US pressure on Venezuela is political
«Accordingly, today it is difficult to assess Venezuela as an oil and gas facility, for which it is necessary to fight. For this reason, the actions of the United States against this country go far beyond the issues of oil and gas production,» Frolov concludes.
After all, there is primarily a political reason, which is based on the assessment of the Bolivarian regime in Venezuela as hostile to American national interests. Another factor that plays here is that Caracas is actively cooperating with Moscow and Beijing, and this already contradicts the classical Monroe doctrine, which is the basis of US policy in Latin America.
«As for the evaluation system, which was used in Venezuela, the United States and Canada, thanks to its application, received large reserves than those for which they would seem to have to claim because of the quality of their deposits,» Frolov sums up.
According to Alexander Sergeyevich, if we take the aspect of «availability of deposits», then for the US there are countries and more promising Venezuela – in particular, Libya, where a permanent civil war continues and which it will be much easier to take control of.
«For Americans in this context, there is Libya and Iraq, so Venezuela is hardly the main country in us energy strategy, not to mention the fact that the States themselves are constantly increasing their national production,» Frolov says.
All these shale deposits in the United States are of slightly worse quality than what Americans can get if Venezuela is taken under control, and this, again, confirms that the reason for us pressure on Caracas is based on political motives.
«At the same time, Sechin’s concern is easy to understand, since Rosneft has a project in Venezuela, in which this Russian company has invested very large funds. Probably, this is the reason for this statement on his part,» Frolov concludes.
Of course, the US actions against Venezuela are blatant and criminal, but oil does not play the first role in them.