The Venezuelan government has called the first steps toward refinancing its foreign debt a resounding success after it released a public statement confirming that the process of refinancing the country's external debt is aimed at complying with its foreign obligations.
The document also stated that "despite the attempts made by the Office of Foreign Assets Control, an entity linked to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, to prevent this," with measures aimed at attacking the Venezuelan economy and hindering the country's foreign economic commitments, the government intends to fulfill its obligations “regardless of the difficulties we face and malicious intentions of blockades."
This success did not prevent Standard & Poor from downgrading Venezuela's debt status Tuesday to SD, or selective default, penalizing the country for what it said was late payment, but at the same time, the ratings agency conceded that overall, Venezuela is still committed to honoring its international debts.
The first meeting between Venezuelan authorities and foreign debt holders on Monday was attended by 414 investors, including U.S., European and British banks.
Venezuela's Vice President Tareck El Aissami presided over the meeting, which was held in the capital Caracas. It included representatives of financial institutions holding Venezuela's debt. El Aissami detailed the blockade and financial siege imposed on the country by the United States and the European Union.
President Nicolas Maduro announced on Sunday that the government had reached an agreement to refinance and restructure the Venezuelan debt with Russia. "We have reached an agreement with Russia, this week we will be signing an agreement where refinancing is established," adding, “We have complied with all our international commitments."