PDVSA's crisis a tragedy for Venezuela

Gustavo CoronelMargarita Island, VenezuelaThe crisis under way centering on the Venezuelan government's politicization of state-owned petroleum company Petroleos de Venezuela SA has all the makings of a national tragedy.Enough damage already has occurred that, even with a change of government, PDVSA's recovery—and that of Venezuela's petroleum industry—could take years.In understanding the current crisis, it is instructive to reflect on PDVSA's history and role in the country's oil and gas sector.Venezuelan nationalization rationaleBy early 1972, the Venezuelan government had acquired almost total control of the petroleum industry, although it still was ope...

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