Cable sobre la actitud de Venezuela ante las peticiones de EE UU en aviación

En marzo de 2009, la Embajada estadounidense en Caracas informa de que el Gobierno de Chávez se niega a aceptar la apertura de pagos que pide Washington

ID:194978
Date:2009-03-03 15:45:00
Origin:09CARACAS269
Source:Embassy Caracas
Classification:CONFIDENTIAL
Dunno:08CARACAS647
Destination:VZCZCXRO8319
PP RUEHAO RUEHCD RUEHGA RUEHGD RUEHHA RUEHHO RUEHMC RUEHMT RUEHNG
RUEHNL RUEHQU RUEHRD RUEHRG RUEHRS RUEHTM RUEHVC
DE RUEHCV #0269/01 0621545
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 031545Z MAR 09
FM AMEMBASSY CARACAS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2674
INFO RUEHWH/WESTERN HEMISPHERIC AFFAIRS DIPL POSTS
RUEAHLC/DHS WASHDC
RULSDMK/DEPT OF TRANSPORTATION
RUEABND/DEA HQ WASHINGTON DC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY
RUMIAAA/HQ USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 CARACAS 000269

SIPDIS

HQ SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD
TREASURY FOR MMALLOY
COMMERCE FOR 4431/MAC/WH/JLAO

E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/28/2019
TAGS: ECON, PGOV, PREL, ETRD, EINV, EAIR, VE
SUBJECT: VENEZUELAN GOVERNMENT IGNORES USG OVERTURES ON
AVIATION

REF: 2008 CARACAS 647

CARACAS 00000269 001.2 OF 002


Classified By: Economic Counselor Darnall Steuart for reasons 1.4
(b) and (d).

1. (C) SUMMARY: A Venezuelan private sector organization
advocated strongly for the Venezuelan civil aviation
authority (INAC) to support the issuance of visas for FAA
inspectors and to meet with the Embassy to discuss visa
matters. The Venezuelan government (GBRV) has not acceded to
either request. While five international airlines recently
received a disbursement of dollars from Venezuelan exchange
control agency (CADIVI), no US carriers were included.
Charge Caulfield's request to meet with CADIVI to discuss US
company requests for dollars has also gone unanswered. END
SUMMARY.

--------------------------------------------- ----
LOCAL SUPPORT FOR THE USG HAS NOT BUDGED THE GBRV
--------------------------------------------- ----

2. (C) XXXXXXXXXXXXX , the
president of the association for domestic airlines (CEVETA),
told Econoffs in January that INAC wanted a solution to its
US visa issues with an emphasis on obtaining visas for
Venezuelan military pilots. On February 11, the A/DCM called
INAC and offered to discuss visa matters with INAC President
Jose Martinez. Although Bracho met with Martinez and
encouraged him to meet with the A/DCM, INAC has yet to
respond to the Embassy's offer.

3. (C) Bracho's association was also a strong proponent of an
FAA visit. Two of Venezuela's three FAA-certified aircraft
maintenance facilities have lost their certifications as FAA
inspectors have been unable to obtain visas. The third
facility will lose its certification in June 2009. Bracho
explained that this situation is extremely detrimental for
Venezuelan businesses in the aviation sector, but that he and
his association members have been unsuccessful in convincing
the Venezuelan government to issue FAA visas. (Note: After
failing in their second attempt to obtain visas, FAA
inspectors withdrew their passports from the Venezuelan
Embassy in early February.)

---------------------
FOREIGN EXCHANGE PAIN
---------------------

4. (C) On February 10, the Charge requested a meeting with
CADIVI to discuss the outstanding dollar requests by US
businesses in all sectors. CADIVI has not responded to the
Charge's request to date. All three US carriers with
operations in Venezuela strongly support a meeting between
the Embassy and CADIVI and would be willing to provide
whatever documentation Post might need for their sector.
(Note: CADIVI is the agency that administers the GBRV's
currency controls. To receive US dollars at the official
exchange rate for transactions such as dividend repatriation
and operating costs, a company must obtain CADIVI approval.
There are no reliable figures for how much money US companies
as a whole have requested from CADIVI, but most believe the
number is in the billions. See reftel for more information on
CADIVI.)

5. (C) On February 17, Econoffs met with Venezuela Country
Manager of the International Air Transport Association (IATA)
xxxxxxxxxxxxx, and
xxxxxxxxxxxxx , President of
the association representing both foreign and domestic air
carriers (ALAV). Both said they would encourage CADIVI
President Manuel Barroso to respond to the Embassy's request.
However, neither was optimistic. XXXXXXXXXXXX pointed out that
the Vice President of IATA had come to Venezuela twice for
appointments with CADIVI but Barroso "stood him up" both
times.

6. (C) Three months ago when it became clear that Venezuela's
supply of dollars would dwindle,xxxxxxxxxxxx said Barroso started
approving all dollar authorizations personally. The
approvals are "completely arbitrary" according to xxxxxxxxxxxxx who
argued that Barroso is a military man and a "mini Chavez" who

CARACAS 00000269 002.2 OF 002


"wants all the power in his own hands." Figueroa said
Barroso recently asked Chavez for another year as the head of
CADIVI and Chavez agreed as Barroso used to be a member of
Chavez' personal security detachment and remains his "good
friend." Nevertheless,xxxxxxxxxxxx argued that CADIVI was not
discriminating against US airlines when it recently disbursed
dollars to five non-US carriers. He explained that there are
simply not enough dollars to go around. American Airlines,
the largest operator in the Venezuelan market, is awaiting
the most substantial dollar disbursement of any airline.

-------
COMMENT
-------

7. (C) While there is strong private sector support for
increased bilateral cooperation on aviation issues, the GBRV
chooses not to respond to USG overtures. Sources in the
sector report that some in INAC want to accept the Embassy's
repeated offers to begin a dialogue on technical issues.
However, INAC officials currently answer directly to the
Venezuelan Vice President who does not seem disposed to
increasing cooperation with the USG. (A more detailed
discussion of internal INAC operations will follow septel.)
US airlines, and indeed the international business community,
are increasingly concerned with the difficulty in obtaining
dollars from CADIVI in part due to the rumored possibility
that the GBRV may devalue in the near future. The GBRV
unfortunately seems uninterested in their concerns.

GENNATIEMPO
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