13 de octubre de 2016 09:36 AM
Actualizado el 13 de octubre de 2016 16:14 PM
State-run oil company Petróleos de Venezuela (Pdvsa) “has one of the lowest debt to reserves-just USD 15 cents of debt per barrel,” said Chief Economist of Torino Capital firm, Francisco Rodríguez, through his weekly report.
His remarks came in response to a column published by Venezuelan economist Ricardo Hausmann and restructuring attorney Mark Walker, laying out a proposal for “a major restructuring of (Venezuela's) external debt,” suggesting that Pdvsa file for bankruptcy protection “in order to shield its assets,” and recommending that “the government withdraw or modify the oil company's monopoly over the exploitation of the country's hydrocarbon reserves.”“We see several problems with the Hausmann-Walker approach. One is that the stripping of Pdvsa’s monopoly Venezuelan oil by the government could end up being seen as an attempt to defraud bondholders from their legitimate rights. From a legal standpoint, bondholders could claim that Pdvsa is an alter ego of the government and that the transfer of monopoly rights to another firm is an attempt to fraudulently convey the debtor’s assets to avoid paying its debts,” Rodríguez added.
“We are also concerned that the move could weaken the case that Venezuela is facing a genuine capacity to pay problem that merits the support of the international financial community,” he continued.
Rodríguez further said that alleging before a US court that Pdvsa is over-indebted and that bondholders must accept an NPV (net present value) haircut is “a daunting task.” In that connection, he opined that the reason why markets “do not want to lend to Pdvsa is not that it is over-indebted.” It is that they mistrust the ability of its authorities to direct resources.
“Rather than take the convoluted and risky strategy of a hostile debt restructuring, it would appear that the most logical course of action for a new administration would be change the management and strategy of Pdvsa and undertake reforms limiting the ability of the government to overtax it,” the economist advised