Venezuela attempted to ship $1.2 billion to Uruguayan affiliates via Portugal’s Novo Banco

A Venezuelan legislator exposed the foiled attempt of Venezuelan authorities to transfer $1.2 billion to Uruguayan bank accounts on Tuesday. The designated tranche would originally circumvent international sanctions being in place against Venezuelan financial entities. The tranche would arrive at first into a proxy account at the Portuguese financial institution Novo Banco from the Venezuelan state bank Bandes. From there a second proxy transfer would finalise the shifting of funds from Bandes to its subsidiary financial entity in Uruguay.

As part of the ongoing sanctions regime, Novo Banco officials immediately halted the eventual transfer of funds, and informed the international community over Venezuelan government’s covert efforts to ship public funds outside the country. The Venezuelan government has attempted to circumvent the ongoing sanctions regime by utilising similar transfers to affiliated financial institutions across Latin America and elsewhere. The scandal’s eruption coincides with international community efforts to amass financial assistance for the Venezuelan people to relieve their plight and ameliorate declining living conditions.

Opposition leader and self-declared President Juan Guaido claimed that President Maduro’s allies have drained state coffers ahead of their exodus from the country. The scandal emerged when legislator Carlos Paparoni referred the issue to the agenda of discussions in a congressional session in Caracas on Tuesday.

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