CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuela’s National Assembly, led by opposition leader Juan Guaido, on Tuesday authorized an interest payment on an overdue bond, in a bid to keep the country’s crown jewel overseas asset out of creditor hands.

FILE PHOTO: PDVSA’s U.S. unit Citgo Petroleum refinery is pictured in Sulphur, Louisiana, U.S., June 12, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman/File Photo

The $71 million interest payment will be paid on state oil company PDVSA’s 2020 bond, which is backed by shares in its subsidiary, U.S. refiner Citgo Petroleum. Failure to make the payment could prompt creditors to attempt to seize up to half of the shares in Citgo.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s government had remained current on the 2020 bond in order to avoid losing Citgo, even as it has