A State Department spokesperson said the U.S. government supports the efforts made by the opposition coalition known as Unitary Platform in around the negotiations, and defer to them on anything further.
“The United States is not a party to negotiations between the Unitary Platform and the Maduro regime,” the spokesperson said.
The two sides are expected to open the meetings by signing an agreement that would unlock $2.7 billion of government funds currently frozen in international accounts that would be used to rebuild electricity grids and fund health projects, among other initiatives, according to the people familiar with the situation. The U.N. would oversee the work and administer the account. The potential sanctions relief is related to the announcement of other specific commitments to support the people of Venezuela, the people familiar said.
Maduro is in urgent need of cash to keep the nation’s recovery on track, as the economy stabilizes following one of the deepest slumps in world history, which caused more than 7 million people to flee the country.
Several previous rounds of talks collapsed, most recently in October 2021, when Maduro walked away from the table after the two sides reached only minor agreements.
The government abandoned those meetings after Maduro’s ally, Alex Saab, was extradited to the U.S. to face money laundering charges.
(Bloomberg staff writers Fabiola Zerpa and Nicolle Yapur contributed to this report.)©2022 Bloomberg L.P. Visit bloomberg.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.