PDVSA Completes US$83mn Debt Repurchase

The PDVSA Finance subsidiary of Venezuela's state oil firm PDVSA last week completed the process of repurchasing its US$83mn debt issued in bonds on the US market and maturing in 2007 through 2028, PDVSA said in a statement.

The main reason for the repurchase was that the interest rates were very high compared to what PDVSA could obtain in the financial market today, PDVSA CFO Eudomario Carruyo said.

The bonds were issued with interest rates ranging from 6.80-9.38%.

PDVSA Finance now has no financing instruments registered with the US Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), meaning that after PDVSA submits its 2004 financial results in May this year it will no longer be required to submit annual financial results to the SEC, the statement said.

PDVSA's US refining and retail subsidiary Citgo owns or has stakes in eight refineries and banners 14,000 gas stations.

Venezuela's energy and oil minister and PDVSA president Rafael Ramirez has said the company, which has most of its operations in Venezuela, should not be required to submit its results to the SEC to protect bondholders in the US.

PDVSA's consolidated debt was US$3.17bn as of April 13 this year compared to US$8.43bn on December 31, 2001, a 62% reduction.

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