March 25, 2007

Full Text of the Contracts Between the Bolivian Government With the Transnationals

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For those of you who are interested in the details of what is and was going on in the negotiation process between the Bolivian government and the companies exploring, refining and commercializing the Bolivian natural gas, here is an interesting link. In it you will find all the original contracts, as they are right now, in PDF format. I say as they are, because they might change in the near future. They are being re-negotiated again.

They are in Spanish, but I assume that those who really want to read the contracts, do read some or a lot of Spanish.

I wish you lots of fun. :-)

9 comments:

Tambopaxi said...

Miguel,

Thanks for the info; obviously too much to read here but still it's good to know that at least some critical info is public. Regarding the overall gas management issue, what's your take on the article on this over in Jim Schultz's Blog on Bolivia?

Comments to the article are not helpful, just attacks on the Schultz and his Democracy Center, so it's hard to determine what the true state of affairs is.

Is the DC article reasonably accurate? What about the comments regarding corrupt management of the contracts in Congress, and the MAS involvement in that?

I have the sense that the whole gas nationalization program is in serious trouble. While I'm not a fan of social state management systems, it's even worse to have in unstable situation, and I'd have to believe the internationals, especially the Brazilians and the Spanish are not comfortable either on this point.

miguel said...

I haven't read that article. Can you give some links?

As far as the contracts' process, I read there were some kind of shenanigans goning on. The director of YPFB, Morales (not related to Evo), apparently had at least two versions of the contracts written down. One version, he sent to Congress for approval and the other was given to the companies to sign. His argument is that in that manner he was able to gain more benefits for Bolivia.

At this point in time, I think the companies have decided to stay and weather the storm. It is funny that none of the foreign companies operating in Bolivia have left, they have only been thrown out. In that way, I think there is a sort of stable situation. The government knows the companies don't want to leave and the companies sort of know what to expect.

Now, that it stays that way, I don't know. I am hoping it does.

Tambopaxi said...

Miguel,

the link is http://democracyctr.org/blog
Your last point on the companies not wanting to leave and knowing what to expect pretty much describes the way the transnationals do business in LatinAmerica (LA). The rhetoric of Morales, Chavez, Correa, or whoever may be anti-transnat, but in most cases, the transnats know if that they stay quiet and negotiate quietly behind the scenes (sometimes with coimas), eventually most of the poltical heat goes away, and they get back to business (as usual).... I dont' know if I should laugh or cry over this.... T

miguel said...

Wow, amusing comments there. People have some strong feelings about it too. I did hear about that guy. He runs more like an advocacy center. I've also heard and read he does some work for MAS. So, I would say he does have some preferences.

Anyway, I agree with one commentator that most of what's written is common knowledge. You read the Bolivian newspapers and you'll get the same info. And yes, the author does touch on some of the recent problems the mentioned process is having. One interesting thing is that the article glances superficially over the problems MAS has with internal divisions.

I have written about it before, there are two currents within MAS, one is strongly dominated by the so called bases, i.e. the people in the Chapare and the Altiplano. The other current is the denominated 'intellectual'. This group of people is made up of mostly professionals, academics and the like. The two currents some times collide on issues such as appointments to important posts, but mostly on ideological bases. The later group are not considered truly masistas and are kicked out of the party as soon as they want to start giving their own ideas.

Another example is that of S. Ric, the former Minister for Basic Services and Public Works, also left the cabinet due to differences with Morales. Ric told the press that the government did not let him take any decisions. The last draw was when the government pushed its own people to fill posts, when Ric wanted to use technical knowledge to select candidates.

In the end, I think Bolivians expect too much out of nationalization and the state company YPFB. The company's worst enemy is its lack of technical and material resources. Bolivians need to realize that, while YPFB can be an important source of $$$, it will not free them of poverty, racism, corruption, etc., etc., etc.

Frank IBC said...

Off topic (sorry) but has anyone heard anything about the visas for US citizens visiting Bolivia? Last I heard the requirement would be effective Sunday, but that zero information on how to actually obtain one had been released, to date.

miguel said...

Last I knew they were to start implementing the policy from April 1.

That is why 10,000 Bolivians are trying to leave the country every day.

Josh has more on this, as he is going to Bolivia in the next weeks.

http://www.joshrenaud.com/bolivia/

Tambopaxi said...

Thanks, Miguel, interesting thoughts. Yeah, Jim Scultz has leftist slant, no doubt about it, but his stuff is well written, salted with some humor (see his current piece on the misfortune of Bolivian beauty queens), and importantly, from my perspective, it's not harsh or shrill, like the rhetoric you see in a lot of comments to his postings. Wisely, Schultz stays out of fights with whoever his.... readers are. I was going to say fans (hinchas) but boy, that's sure not the case... regards, T

miguel said...

Well, thank you and I appreciate you visiting MABBlog.

Frank IBC said...

Thanks for the info, Miguel. I wish I had made my travel plans for next week as I had originally intended. On the other hand, I may have found myself stranded waiting for the connection from Santa Cruz to Cochabamba due to the collapse of LAB.

Next off-topic question - can you recommend a place in the DC area where I can buy quillquina, or llajua?