THE White House has threatened Repsol with ‘devastating sanctions’ unless it withdraws from Venezuela.
Along with Italy’s ENI and India’s Reliance, the Spanish oil giant has been ordered to ‘cease operations’ in the South American country.
It comes after US President Donald Trump already banned Chevron from drilling or transporting oil in Venezuela.
The threat to Repsol is the latest bid by Washington to put further pressure on Venezuela’s socialist President Nicolas Maduro.
The under-fire leader was accused of election rigging in 2018, and has since presided over a deep economic crisis.
Repsol was threatened by the Americas director of the US National Security Council, Mauricio Claver-Carona.
“There have been no exceptions for Chevron, or for any company in the world,” he said on TV channel NTN24.
He added: “We promise you that no one has exceptions to the sanctions that we can impose due to transportation and business with the mature Nicolas regime.
“We are very clear about that.
“We have shown these three companies what has happened to Rosneft Trading.
“Obviously, penalties for those three companies would be devastating, and that is not what we would like to see happen.”
Rosneft Trading is another oil company on which the US has imposed sanctions for its activity in Venezuela.
Venezuela’s leader of the opposition Juan Guaido is recognised as the country’s de facto leader by Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and the EU Parliament.