Venezuela plays down Exxon's assets freezes

Rafael Ramirez, Venezuela's energy minister, on Friday rejected concerns that PDVSA, the state oil company, would be affected by attempts by ExxonMobil to freeze assets worth $12bn. Exxon won court orders on Thursday in the UK, the Netherlands and the Netherlands Antilles to freeze PDVSA's global assets in an attempt to secure compensation for operations lost to President Hugo Chavez's nationalisation drive last year.