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The new revolutionary board of Venezuela's PDVSA

By Aleksander Boyd

London 27.01.05 | Venezuela's constitution gives the head of the Executive powers to appoint the board of Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA). Hence, Hugo Chavez recently reshuffled the board of the oil conglomerate appointing, in some instances illegally as is the case with Rafael Ramirez, new directors. Further to the presidential measures, a meeting was held on Jan 19 to establish duties and responsibilities of the new members of the board.

Apart from the duties that Rafael Ramirez has got as Venezuela's acting Minister of Energy and Mines, he has executive roles, as head of PDVSA, ranging from public affairs to social development passing along legal consultancy and auditing. Luis Vierma is PDVSA's number 2: also member of the executive board he oversees, as principal, exploration & production; environment, hygiene and security; he's the head of INTEVEP; he's also substitute director of a) refinery, b) Venezuelan Petroleum Corporation (CVP) and c) Productos Especiales Compaņia Anonima (PROESCA). Alejandro Granado, third on board, is in charge of PDVSA's 1) refinery; 2) human resources, 3) logistical services and 4) PROESCA. Granado sits as substitute director for a) INTEVEP; b) PDVSA's social development; c) PDVSA's planning; d) PDVSA's commercialization and supply; e) PDVSA's distribution (internal) and DELTAVEN; and f) Bitumenes del Orinoco (BITOR). Asdrubal Chavez, cousin of Hugo, manages 1) PDVSA's commercialization and supply; 2) PDV MARINA; 3) internal distribution and DELTAVEN; 4) BITOR, being substitute director of a) international business; b) human resources and c) INTERVEN. The name of Bernard Mommer also pops quite a few times as director of PDV UK, CVP, CVP International, PDVSA and BITOR. BITOR? Is it not true that Mommer has written extensively about the unprofitable nature of BITOR?

Foreign companies and investors should be well aware of the rather peculiar board of PDVSA. Contracts and agreements entered into with these people will not be honoured nor respected for one simple reason; these 'oil executives' are but messenger boys of Hugo Chavez and as some companies are painfully aware long term deals mean nothing to the Venezuelan president. A deep rooted anti-USA stance, however, is the best presentation card for investors and companies willing to do business with Chavez' PDVSA, isn't that right Petro-China? NIOC?

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