The benevolent dictator has come up with a great method to take over an international firms assets, in this case an oil production company out of the U.S.. Just don't pay for the oil produced and when the company refuses to produce more on credit you just seize the assets claiming their lack of production is hurting the state. According to this article, over 60 companies shared the same fate last year. What's not to love about this guy?
Petroleos de Venezuela SA, the state oil company, is seeking the nationalization of 11 oil-drilling rigs owned by Helmerich & Payne Inc., which it accuses of trying to slow crude production in the South American country.
PDVSA, as the oil company is known, will seek National Assembly approval to seize the rigs in Anzoategui state after a payment battle with the Tulsa, Oklahoma-based company, Rafael Ramirez, oil minister and president of PDVSA, said yesterday in an e-mailed statement.
“There are rig owners that have refused to discuss payment rates for services and preferred to hide the rigs for a year,” Ramirez said. “It’s the specific case of Helmerich & Payne. We won’t allow them to sabotage our operations.”
Helmerich & Payne idled its drilling rigs last year after PDVSA fell behind with payments to service suppliers amid a drop in oil output and revenue. Ramirez, who said in January that debts to suppliers had “vanished,” has overseen the nationalization of ventures with Exxon Mobil Corp. and ConocoPhillips and the seizure of assets from more than 60 service companies last year.
Helmerich & Payne said today in a statement that it hasn’t received notice as of this morning from PDVSA or government officials regarding the nationalization of its rigs. The company said it has offered to sell rig assets to PDVSA, which has also expressed interest in buying the equipment.
‘Surprised’ by Announcement
“We are surprised by yesterday’s announcement only because we have been in ongoing efforts in a good faith attempt to accommodate a win-win resolution, including a willingness to sell rigs,” Chief Executive Officer Hans Helmerich said in the statement.
The company, which has operated in Venezuela for 52 years, said the total amount owed is about $43 million. It had a net book value of about $67 million of long-lived assets in the country at the end of its second fiscal quarter and another $5 million in equipment inventories.
It has a total of 253 U.S. and international land rigs and nine offshore platform rigs, the company said.
Helmerich & Payne Executive Vice President John Lindsay said during an April 29 conference call the company would keep the rigs idled until overdue debts were paid and accumulated bolivars were converted into U.S. dollars abroad.
No Work Return
“While we will continue to pursue future drilling opportunities in Venezuela for these 11 conventional rigs, we do not expect to return to work in Venezuela until additional progress is made on pending receivable collections and on conversion of local currency to U.S. dollars,” Lindsay said on the call.
Venezuela is the largest oil producer in South America and a founding member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
Helmerich & Payne fell $1.14, or 2.8 percent, to $39.27 at 12:27 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares, which have 12 buy ratings from analysts, 11 holds and 1 sell, have dropped 1.5 percent this year.