Money and Markets

Hundreds of millions of dollars were shipped from Russia to Venezuela to sidestep US sanctions

Business Insider US

  • Hundreds of millions of dollars have been shipped from Russia to Venezuela, Bloomberg reported.
  • Bloomberg analysed data from ImportGenius which found that R4,7 billion was sent from Russia between May 2018 to and April 2019.
  • The money, Bloomberg said, can be used in a variety of methods such as "repatriating cash held overseas or dividends from a stake in a Moscow-based bank".
  • Venezuela has been subject to a variety of sanctions from the US as the Trump administration recognises opposition leader Guaidó as president of the country not Maduro.
  • View Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Hundreds of millions of dollars have been shipped from Russia to Venezuela, as the country attempts to skirt US sanctions.

Bloomberg analyzed data from ImportGenius and found that R4,7 billion worth of cash in the form of US dollars and euros, were shipped from Russia.

Venezuela has been gripped in violent conflict since the start of the year, with fighting over who actually leads the country.

Venezuela has been looking for methods of raising cash due to the sanctions, with US banks refusing to lend to the country. Sales of gold have been one method, while using cryptocurrency has been another.

The EU and the US have condemned Maduro's administration's treatment of opposition leader Juan Guaidó, leading to sanctions from the US, according to Bloomberg.

The country became cash strapped, and the money allows access to the global financial system.

Bloomberg said that the cash allows Venezuela to buy back its money from oversees or get dividends from "a stake in a Moscow-based bank or revenue from sales of crude or gold."

According to the analysis, R1,6 million worth of 100-euro bills were sent in January from Gaprombank. They also sent R750 million in dollar bills two days previously, along with more payments made in May and July of 2018.

Bloomberg said that an unnamed Venezuelan government official confirmed the payments.

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