Bolivian Gas Takeover Sets a Familiar Scene

Bolivian Gas Takeover Sets a Familiar Scene
A new government in Bolivia, anxious to win public support, charges the big foreign oil companies with fraud and confiscates their local properties. The move generates applause among Bolivian citizens and attracts attention throughout Latin America.

The year: 1937.

It just happened again, with the newly-elected President, Morales. With rebels in Nigeria, war in Iraq and tension in Iran, this might be a natural time for the United States to look to Latin America to diversify its sources of energy. But with nationalist anti-oil company fervor spreading, that opportunity is being lost. Mexico still restricts foreign investment; investment in Argentina's energy sector has plunged since its financial crisis; and elections in Peru, where one candidate has been endorsed by Chavez, could alter policies there.

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