Goldman Sachs accused of giving a lifeline to Venezuela's oppressive government

Reuters:
The president of Venezuela's opposition-run Congress on Monday accused Wall Street investment bank Goldman Sachs of "aiding and abetting the country's dictatorial regime" following a report that it had bought $2.8 billion in bonds from the cash-strapped country.

The Wall Street Journal on Sunday said Goldman paid 31 cents on the dollar for bonds issued by state oil company PDVSA that mature in 2022, or around $865 million, citing five people familiar with the transaction.

That comes as two months of opposition protests against President Nicolas Maduro have killed almost 60 people and the collapse of the country's socialist economy has left millions of people struggling to eat.

"Goldman Sachs' financial lifeline to the regime will serve to strengthen the brutal repression unleashed against the hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans peacefully protesting for political change in the country," wrote Julio Borges in a letter to Goldman Sachs President Lloyd Blankfein.

"Given the unconstitutional nature of Nicolas Maduro's administration, its unwillingness to hold democratic elections and its systematic violation of human rights, I am dismayed that Goldman Sachs decided to enter this transaction."
...
The US should consider sanctions against the Maduro regime to halt these types of transactions.  Goldman got a very high risk premium on these bonds because to the substantial risk of default.  It is a good indication of the desperation of the Maduro regime.

The opposition to Maduro is threatening to not pay any new debt incurred by the current government.

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