Venezuela has named the OPEC Secretary General Ali Rodriguez as head of state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela, the news channel Globovision reported, without citing sources. Rodriquez will replace Gaston Parra, who resigned last week along with the board of directors to end an eight day strike at the company. “From a PDVSA point of view it is good,” said Tim Evans, senior energy analyst at IFR Pegasus in New York. “It's likely to at least bring a cease fire to a lot of the internal conflicts. He's respected and is somebody who they can rally around in the short term.” Chavez is counting on Rodriguez's appointment to ease labor tensions at PDVSA where striking workers halted export shipments and reduced production last week to demand the resignation of Parra and the board. The workers claimed some board members were appointed for their political loyalty to Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez and that they were not qualified for the jobs they had been given.
The United States has imposed new sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, which still remains under construction