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16 Sep 2021

OPEC Secretary General visits Venezuela, meets President Maduro

Caracas, Venezuela, 16 September 2021--OPEC Secretary General, HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, has visited the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela at the gracious invitation of its government to celebrate OPEC’s 61st Anniversary. Venezuela is a Founder Member of OPEC.

The four-day visit has already included meetings with HE Nicolas Maduro, President of Venezuela, HE Delcy Rodriguez Gomez, the nation’s Vice President, HE Tareck El Aissami, People's Minister of Petroleum, HE Felix Plasencia, Minister of Foreign Affairs and HE Asdrubal Chavez, President of Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA), the country’s national oil company.

The Secretary General was received at the Miraflores Palace in Caracas by President Maduro. Minister El Aissami was present at the meeting.

President Maduro conveyed the reassurance of Venezuela’s utmost support to OPEC and the historic Declaration of Cooperation (DoC), praising the strength of the partnership between OPEC and non-OPEC oil producing countries participating in the DoC to address oil market challenges.

The President also highlighted the leading role played by OPEC during the COVID-19 pandemic. He also commended the Secretary General for his efforts in fostering dialogue and building consensus to find viable solutions.

In this context, President Maduro reiterated the importance of the DoC, with 23 oil producing counties pursuing policies that support the process of oil market rebalancing and stability, as well as tackling future challenges facing the industry.

The President also stressed the importance of producing a documentary that covers OPEC and its role in supporting stability in the global oil market.

The Secretary General thanked the President for his exemplary leadership and utmost support to the DoC process, particularly the decisions adopted in 2020, which were critical to address oil market challenges caused by the pandemic.

The bilateral meeting between the Secretary General and Minister El Aissami was held at the minister’s office in Caracas.

At the meeting, the Minister welcomed the Secretary General to Venezuela, noting that this is the fifth visit for the Secretary General to the OPEC Member Country since 2016. The Minister also highlighted that today’s meeting serves as his first in-person meeting with the Secretary General.

In return, the Secretary General expressed his appreciation for the gracious invitation to celebrate the Organization’s 61st Anniversary in Venezuela, the land of the legend Simon Bolivar and the home country of OPEC veteran Juan Pablo Perez Alfonzo, who represented Venezuela at the Organization’s founding meeting.

They also discussed the successful efforts of the DoC exerted in the interests of oil market stability, which has contributed positively to the global recovery process from the COVID-19 pandemic. Both acknowledged that the current oil cycle is the most complex one in the industry’s history.

The Secretary General and the Minister held a joint press conference following the conclusion of the meeting. He also attended the inauguration of a photo exhibition titled ‘OPEC and Venezuela, 61 years of common history’.

The Secretary General was received on Tuesday, 14 September 2021, by Minister Plasencia and an accompanying delegation at Simon Bolivar International Airport in Caracas.

The Organization was established at a meeting from 10-14 September 1960 in Baghdad, Iraq.