Rene Preval and Issue related to PetroCaribe

The Haiti PetroCaribe oil deal was signed just moments following the inauguration of René Préval; one mile away, in the Port-au-Prince bay, was the first shipment of diesel and unleaded fuel from Venezuela. Such decisive movements showed plainly that, while allaying US fears of a Haiti alliance with Venezuela, President Préval had already intended to join the Caribbean oil alliance.


The benefits were immediate, though it would take a few more years before regular deliveries of oil would be possible and construction on the promised oil refinery, an additional gift in the deal, would be complete. But Haiti's new fortune, while it came cheaply, was not without considerable price. The estimated $100 million US that the GOH would save from the delayed payment plan (with 60% up front and the remainder payable over 25 years at 1% interest) was paid for by the anger of the US Government and the US oil companies Chevron and ExxonMobil. Not only was PetroCaribe the project of Ugo Chavez, but it would mean significant losses to US investors.

As stated by then US Ambassador Janet Sanderson, Préval had a significant chance to 'score points' with the Haitian population. He obviously thought the benefit to Haitians outweighed the loss to the US. The deal guaranteed their oil supply at stable prices, it afforded 10 million Haitians basic necessities they'd been without, offered Haiti the chance to be less dependent on the US for energy, and the extra $100 million per year could be used to fund schools, hospitals and disaster relief.

Methods of resistance, including sabotage by denying cooperation, were practiced by US officials and the US oil companies who insisted the deal was a bad one. Sanderson stressed it would send a negative message to the international community at the most inopportune time and disparaged the decision to accept the deal by saying Préval had been 'seduced by PetroCaribe's payment plan.'

Reply to this article

Read more: rene preval, Energy, Chevron, Fuel, Venezuela, PetroCaribe, Exxon-Mobil, Janet Sanderson, School Funding, Sabotage, People

« Rene Preval and Relationship with United States | Main | Rene Preval and Relationship with United States »

Return to Articles List

Leave a Reply

Name (required)

E-mail (required, will not be published)

Subject: Rene Preval and Issue related to PetroCaribe edit

» »

Our objective is to share with you news and information about Haiti and the people of Haiti. Traditions, habits and the way we were  or  grew are alive in this site. We highly recommend that you Subscribe to our Newsletter and also share with us some of the things that are memorable and made us unique people.