ICC Rules Venezuela Owes Exxon Mobil $900 Million

An international arbitration panel has ruled Venezuela’s state oil company owes Exxon Mobil more than $900 million. But Venezuela says it will pay less than a third that amount.


Venezuela is hailing the ruling by the International Chamber of Commerce as a victory. Exxon Mobil had sought roughly $12 billion in compensation from state oil company PDVSA, after President Hugo Chávez’s government nationalized an Exxon oil project in the country’s Orinoco Belt.

PDVSA says it will pay only $255 million of the total award. It says Exxon Mobil has already seized $300 million from the state oil company’s US accounts and that Exxon owes PDVSA about $350 million.

In a written statement, Exxon said the Venezuelan company’s frozen US assets and PDVSA’s cancellation of Exxon’s project debts both could be used to help pay the award. 

Exxon has filed a separate claim on the same dispute with the World Bank. That case is set to be argued in February. There are more than a dozen pending claims against Venezuela stemming from other state takeovers, including one by Houston-based ConocoPhillips.


Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas delegations in the U.S. House and Senate, as well as the Texas governorship, the state legislature, and county and city governments. Before taking up his current post, Andrew...

More Information