Saturday, June 10, 2017

A simple but complex question from a humble Venezuelan economist to any outstanding Venezuelan international lawyer


"Article 12. Mining and hydrocarbon deposits, whatever their nature, existing in the national territory, under the territorial sea bed, in the exclusive economic zone and on the continental shelf, belong to the Republic, are property of the domain Public and, therefore, inalienable and imprescriptible. "

Suppose a Revised Constitution would establish: "Article 12. Mining and hydrocarbon deposits, whatever their nature, existing in the national territory, under the territorial sea bed, in the exclusive economic zone and on the continental shelf, belong to Venezuelan citizens, as long as they live and, therefore, inalienable and imprescriptible."

Suppose also that the current PDVSA bankruptcy and all its assets are acquired by a PDVSA II or by any other national or foreign company that, on behalf of the citizens of Venezuela, has been entrusted to extract and market that oil providentially deposited in Venezuela. 

So then a tanker would be transporting, not the oil of a sovereign country, but the oil privately owned by millions of Venezuelan citizens.  My question to expert lawyers would then be:

Could the financiers of the Bolivarian Revolution of Venezuela, or old PDVSA, embargo that tanker? Could a tanker for instance belonging to ExxonMobil, be seized by creditors of the United States or the state of Texas in the event that any of the latter fail to meet financial obligations?

Of course, current Venezuela and Pdvsa creditors would claim before judges they always lent against estimated future oil revenues. But, can a government mortgage something that the constitution itself declares as inalienable?

Would the world, knowing then that the oil revenues carried by the tanker would be delivered directly to millions of Venezuelans, the rightful owners of the oil, and which will help these to satisfy some basic human needs, like food and medicines ... allow that tanker to be embargoed in order to satisfy the cravings of a few speculating financiers?

Dear friends, our Venezuela has been ransacked. It is the obligation of every Venezuelan to seek to try to save our nation in any way we can. 

If expert lawyers respond to me with a "You’re crazy Kurowski, that’s not possible", then, shamelessly, I’ll try to find other ways.

And if that means governments’ of Venezuela will not get access to credit in the future, I would almost count that as a blessing.