Quevedos rise also highlighted the increasing power of the Venezuelan military, which has gained clout in Maduro’s Cabinet as well as in key industries like mining as well as food distribution.
While military appointments had also been increasing within the oil industry, PDVSA so far had been led by chemist Nelson Martinez as well as the Oil Ministry by engineer Eulogio Del Pino.
The military has achieved its aim of controlling PDVSA. The forecast will be somber, said Francisco Monaldi, a fellow in Latin American energy policy at the Baker Institute in Houston, echoing much of the mood within the local oil industry.
Quevedo also faces accusations coming from the opposition of violating human rights during the National Guard’s handling of anti-Maduro protests.
U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, a vocal critic of Maduro, had included Quevedo on a 2014 list of Venezuelan officials who should be named in U.S. sanctions, although Quevedo does not appear within the list released by the U.S. Treasury Department.
that will will be a game changer for international oil companies. If political as well as reputational risk could get any higher for oil companies, that will will be the item, said Raul Gallegos, an analyst with the consultancy Control Risks.
PDVSA will be closely allied with Russian state oil giant Rosneft as well as state-owned oil major China National Petroleum Corp, although Western oil companies like U.S. major Chevron as well as France’s Total also operate in Venezuela.