CARACAS -- The Venezuelan Parliament today accused the head of state, Nicolás Maduro, of announcing the restructuring of the foreign debt to sink the price of Venezuelan bonds, with the objective of being repurchased by funds willing to offer better payment terms.
This was denounced today by the Deputy Rafael Guzmán, on behalf of the Finance Committee of the National Assembly opposition majority, which is the only power not aligned with the Chavez government in Venezuela.
"What is the intention? That this debt be bought at the price of a skinny chicken and then enter into a bilateral negotiation with these funds," Guzmán said from Parliament, where he reproached the government for offering "inside information" to these " close funds. "
The opposition deputy recalled that some bonds of the Venezuelan Government and its state company Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) fell from 30 to 40% last week after Maduro ordered the refinancing of all the public external debt of the Caribbean country.
According to Guzmán, this circumstance was used by some investment funds in Europe and Asia to get hold of those bonds.
"We saw that and it will continue to happen in the coming days," added Guzmán, who was convinced that the government wants to continue paying its debt and will not go into suspension of payments or "default".
Maduro announced on Thursday his government's intention to refinance all of Venezuela's and PDVSA's foreign debt, which must pay billions in government and PDVSA government bonds for the remainder of the year and more than $9 billion in 2018.
PDVSA apparently paid two principal payments which amounted to over $2 billion, thus avoiding a "default" that would put under threat of embargo the assets and capital of the state oil company outside from the country.
The president -- who blames persecution by imperialist Western investment banks and United States sanctions for the financing difficulties of Venezuela -- has summoned Venezuelan bondholders to a meeting on November 13 in Caracas to renegotiate the payment of the debt.
The opposition and many analysts see it unlikely that holders will accept a restructuring of the debt if the Maduro government does not change central planning policies that have led the country to hyperinflation and the most serious economic crisis in its history.