Venezuela should honour its debt obligations to Russia despite the political situation in Caracas, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Thursday. ”Russia hopes that Venezuela, even in case of a change of power in the country, will fulfil its obligations under the debt to Russia, Siluanov told reporters on the sidelines of the Russian Investment Forum in the Black Sea resort of Sochi.
These are international obligations. They must be respected, he said when asked what the chances were that Venezuela would repay the debt if power changed in the country.
Speaking in Moscow Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov highlighted that the Venezuelan debt was contracted on the basis of inter-governmental agreements, which are fully implemented.
Lavrov reiterated a call for dialogue and balanced mediation, condemning the destructive stance of the western-backed opposition.
His remarks, which avoided mention of Maduro specifically, suggest that Moscow will hold Caracas accountable for repayment regardless of who is in charge.
Russia is owed some US$ 3bn in restructured debt which was extended by Russian state-controlled oil company Rosneft. Part of the debt is collateralized with 49.9% of the parent company of Citgo, the US refining arm of Venezuelan state-owned oil company PDVSA.
Last year Moscow promised another US$ 5bn in credit to raise crude production and purchase 600,000 tons of Russian wheat, but this has not been dispersed, and Moscow sources said that any debt default would cut off Russian maintenance and technical support for Venezuela´s military.