Venezuela state oil company PDVSA reports sharp drop in revenues
Caracas, Venezuela - Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PDVSA revealed on Saturday that its revenues have dropped sharply, spelling bad news for a crisis-torn country heavily reliant on its exports of crude oil.
Revenues in 2016 slumped 33.5 per cent compared to the previous year, the company said in a report published on its website. PDVSA registered US$48bn in income for last year, compared to US$72bn in 2015.
The average price of a barrel of Venezuelan crude declined 21 per cent to US$35.15 in 2016, down from US$44.65 in 2015, it said.
The country’s Oil Ministry has projected that Venezuelan crude would fetch US$43.72 a barrel in 2017, but oil prices remain depressed globally.
The South American nation, an OPEC member with the largest proven oil reserves in the world, relies on crude exports for 96 per cent of its foreign cur- rency and for around half of government income.
The United States is its biggest customer, buying roughly 40 per cent of output. Much of the rest goes to repay loans from China and Russia.
According to PDVSA, Venezuela’s oil production has slumped steadily in the past two years, going from 2.9mn barrels per day (bpd) in 2015, to 2.57mn bpd last year and 1.9mn bpd this year.