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PetroChina's Jieyang refinery to receive first Venezuelan oil cargo

(Reuters) - PetroChina's Jieyang refinery will receive its first direct crude oil cargo from Venezuela, according to trade sources and ship tracking data on Kpler, after Washington temporarily lifted sanctions on the OPEC producer.

The 2 million barrels of Venezuelan Merey crude onboard supertanker Elysia is due to arrive at Jieyang on March 24, Kpler data showed.

PetroChina did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Reuters reported in November that state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA) and PetroChina were in talks for a crude supply deal during the six-month reprieve.

Washington last year relaxed sanctions on Venezuela's oil industry in return for promises to open its presidential election to international observers and allow the opposition to choose its candidate, which has not happened.

If the U.S. does not renew next month the license granted in October that lifted sanctions, PDVSA would probably return to using intermediaries to sell its oil to buyers such as China, likely at discounts.

Jieyang, a greenfield 400,000-bpd refinery and petrochemical complex in southern China Guangdong province, is the newest among PetroChina's refining facilities.

The plant started trial runs in late 2022 and was designed to process heavy oil such as crude from Venezuela.

PetroChina dropped PDVSA as the partner for the Jieyang complex in 2019 after the United States imposed sanctions on PDVSA to undermine the rule of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.


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