Tulsa, Oklahoma based Helmerich and Payne, Inc. says they have not yet been notified of a move by Venezuelan dictator, Hugo Chavez, to nationalize their drilling operations. Reuters is reporting eleven Helmerich and Payne rigs in Venezuela will be taken.
Chavez wants to start the company’s rig operations that are now sitting idle. They are idle, according to Helmerich and Payne President Hans Helmerich, because the Venezuelan government has not paid for past work. “We stated repeatedly we wanted to return to work, just not for free.”
In January 2010, Chavez announced he was devaluing the Venezuelan bolivar by half. The Wall Street Journal article on this story says Helmerich and Payne negotiations with Chavez include disputes about “currency conversion” issues. In other words, Helmerich and Payne are likely expected to accept half payment rather than full payment.
Oil is the major source of Venezuela’s revenue – most of that derived by nationalizing businesses legally owned by others. It’s called Socialism/Marxism.