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Chevron's 5th and 6th cargoes of Venezuelan oil soon to depart

(Reuters) - Two tankers chartered by Chevron Corp are loading Venezuelan heavy crude at the South American country and should depart in coming days for the United States, according to shipping documents and sources.

The Greece-flagged Amalthea is loading some 250,000 barrels of Boscan crude at the Bajo Grande terminal, while the Bahamas-flagged Caribbean Voyager is scheduled to load 500,000 barrels of Hamaca crude at the Jose port this week, the documents showed.

The vessels will carry Chevron's fifth and sixth cargoes of Venezuelan crude since the U.S. Treasury Department in November authorized the company to reanimate and expand operations in the sanctioned country.

Tankers Kerala, Sealeo, Carina Voyager and ICE Fighter set sail earlier this month for Chevron's Pascagoula, Mississippi, refinery and plants in Freeport and Corpus Christi, Texas, according to Refinitiv Eikon data, marking a strong start to the renewed business relationship between PDVSA and Chevron.

Chevron's supply contract is among a few that have not been suspended since a new administration at PDVSA this month ordered a freeze to most contracts until a general audit is done.

Chevron also is sending its second cargo of U.S. heavy naphtha to Venezuela to dilute for export its Petropiar project's crude, on tanker Hamburg Star, the sources said.

The U.S. oil company this month confirmed shipping activities in Venezuela have commenced and said it is focused on "operating safely and reliably" after restarting operations at its affiliated joint ventures in December.

(Reporting by Marianna Parraga; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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