Vienna, Austria, 2 September 2016–OPEC Secretary General, HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, received Venezuela’s Permanent Representative to the International Organizations, HE Jesse Chacón, at the OPEC Secretariat on 30 August 2016.
Mr. Chacón conveyed a message of congratulations to Mr. Barkindo on behalf of the government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela on his new position as OPEC Secretary General. He praised Mr. Barkindo’s extensive experience in the industry and said he was confident that, under his leadership, efforts and policies to support oil market stability would continue. “You can count on Venezuela for our permanent support”, added Mr. Chacón.
The Secretary General thanked the Ambassador and asked him to convey his appreciation to the Venezuelan government for the “pro-active and constructive role played” to overcome the industry’s recent challenges. He said he intended to work closely with Mr. Chacón’s office – in the coming weeks, months, and years – in order to more regularly exchange views and outlooks.
In looking over the challenges faced by the industry over the past five decades – particularly the five “boom-and-bust cycles” that have occurred – the Secretary General noted that “no one country is immune; we are all affected”. In this, like other OPEC Member Countries, “Venezuela has always played a leading role in forging cooperation … and promoting producer-consumer dialogue”, he said.
The Ambassador said his government was looking forward to receiving the Secretary General in Venezuela in the near future, as a guest of President Nicolás Maduro. He added that he would also extend an invitation to the Secretary General to attend a performance of Venezuela’s famed youth symphony orchestra, the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra, when it plays in Vienna in March of next year.
The Secretary General said he was deeply grateful for Venezuela’s invitation and asked Mr. Chacón to convey his appreciation to President Maduro. He said he looked forward to working closely with Venezuela on points of common interest.
Referring to the pictorial history and timeline of OPEC, currently located on the first floor of the Secretariat, the Secretary General praised the “intellectual foresight” of the ‘founding fathers’ of the Organization. One of my objectives, said the Secretary General, is now “to build on the legacies of previous Secretaries General” – and help continue to make the OPEC Secretariat a centre of excellence.