UPDATE 1-3M may remove Venezuelan assets from balance sheet

viernes 13 de febrero de 2015 11:48 GYT

(Adds details about other companies in Venezuela)

By Tim McLaughlin

Feb 13 (Reuters) - 3M Co, the diversified manufacturer, said it may remove assets in Venezuela from its balance sheets because of problems related to exchanging the South American's country's bolivar currency.

3M's operations in Venezuela are small, representing less than 1 percent of consolidated operating profit in 2014. The company said Venezuela-related receivables are less than $20 million.

"A need to deconsolidate the company's Venezuelan subsidiary's operations may result from a lack of exchangeability" of its currency, "coupled with an acute degradation in the ability to make key operational decisions due to government regulations in Venezuela," 3M said in its annual report filed on Thursday with U.S. regulators.

3M was not immediately available for comment.

Venezuela has been a tough place to do business for large U.S. companies because of its 64 percent annual inflation, plunging oil revenue and unstable currency.

Automaker Ford Motor Co last month blamed Venezuela's currency devaluation plans as one reason for removing its operations there from its financial reports.

Clorox Co last year exited Venezuela altogether. And toy maker Mattel Inc may close operations there if economic or political conditions significantly worsen. (Reporting By Tim McLaughlin in Boston; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Jeffrey Benkoe)