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BOLIVIA: State in Control of Its Hydrocarbons

GRANMA INTERNATIONAL
Havana. January21, 2008

State control of hydrocarbons in Bolivia
By Mario Hubert Garrido

LA PAZ, January 21 (PL).—The Movement Toward Socialism (MAS) government
today noted that, in two years of power, President Evo Morales has recovered
state control of Bolivians’ principal natural resource: hydrocarbons.

César Navarro, MAS leader in the Chamber of Deputies, explained to Prensa
Latina that since May 1, 2006, when nationalization of the sector was
decreed, it has not been up to the transnationals to decide on the future of
the country’s energy.

According to Navarro, under previous governments the state was merely the
receptor of handouts from those foreign companies.

At the same time, he noted that by recovering control of its natural
resources, Bolivia has been able to negotiate better prices for the gas it
sells to Argentina and Brazil.

Since January 2006, when Morales was installed in Quemado Palace, the
principle of “we want partners, not bosses,” has been adhered to with
foreign companies, he stated.

Navarro also welcomed the fact that the nationalization of hydrocarbons has
allowed for the redistribution of profits to the prefectures, municipalities
and universities, profits that were previously taken out of the country by
the transnationals.

Navarro said the re-founding of the state oil company YBFB is to be
consolidated in 2008, implying greater participation in the entire
productive chain.

Morales is celebrating two years as the first indigenous president of
Bolivia, immersed in a national dialogue with an opposition that is active
against the social changes set in motion by his government.

On May 1, 2006 he fulfilled the central proposal of his program, the
nationalization of hydrocarbons.

Translated by Granma International

January 23, 2008 Posted by | Bolivia, Morales | , | Leave a comment