Trump Could Announce Oil Sanctions For Venezuela Right After Election, Analyst Says

Venezuela will be holding its presidential election on May 20 but experts are wondering what’s going to happen right after that. Many believe Nicolas Maduro will win, despite his huge drop in popularity in recent years.

The US and many other Latin American countries have criticized the Venezuelan government for moving up the presidential election, saying they will not be free or fair. The election was originally scheduled for December but it was moved up earlier this year. The government was planning to hold the election in April but that was later postponed to May 20.

Sanctions Coming?

Tamas Vargas, analyst at PVM Oil Associates, said to CNBC during a phone interview yesterday that Maduro will win as the election is rigged and will not be fair. He added that the question is how the United States will react after the results.

The analyst was asked about if oil traders should expect to see sanctions after the South American nation after the election and he replied by saying that knowing Donald Trump, it is more than just a prospect because he likes to play hardball and he is not afraid to punish countries.

Venezuela’s Oil Industry

In recent years, the US government has imposed several sanctions against Venezuelan government officials. Oil sanctions have never been part of the announcements but US government officials have recently mentioned that the idea has been considered.

Oil sanctions against the Venezuelan government could be the toughest out of all since they depend on oil sales. Venezuela’s oil industry has seen a huge drop in its crude output since 2015 and its problems are only getting worse over the ConocoPhillips situation.

The Venezuelan government has repeatedly said that the elections will happen on May 20. Participation could see a massive drop as many are calling for people not to vote. The opposition is boycotting the vote.

The Presidential Race

The presidential race includes Nicolas Maduro, Henri Falcon and Javier Bertucci. Mr. Falcon is a former soldier and governor of the Lara state. His decision to participate in the election has been heavily criticized by the opposition, which he was recently part of. Mr. Falcon was once a member of the PSUV party, which he abandoned in 2010. Those things have raised doubts among those supporting the opposition as they believe he is only there to have a competitor to Maduro.