Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Five Charts That Show We Are on the Brink of an Unthinkable Financial Crisis- John_Mauldin
2.Bitcoin Parabolic Mania - Zeal_LLC
3.Bitcoin Doesn’t Exist – 2 - Raul_I_Meijer
4.Best Time / Month of Year to BUY a USED Car is DECEMBER, UK Analysis - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Labour Sheffield City Council Election Panic Could Prompt Suspension of Tree Felling's Private Security - N_Walayat
6.War on Gold Intensifies: It Betrays the Elitists’ Panic and Augurs Their Coming Defeat Part2 - Stewart_Dougherty
7.How High Will Gold Go? - Harry_Dent
8.Bitcoin Doesn’t Exist – Forks and Mad Max - Raul_I_Meijer
9.UK Stagflation Risk As Inflation Hits 3.1% and House Prices Fall - GoldCore
10.New EU Rules For Cross-Border Cash, Gold Bullion Movements - GoldCore
Last 7 days
Jim Rickards: Next Financial Panic Will Be the Biggest of All, with Only One Place to Turn… - 20th Jan 18
Macro Trend Changes for Gold in 2018 and Beyond - Empire Club of Canada - 20th Jan 18
Top 5 Trader Information Sources for Timely, Successful Investing - 20th Jan 18
Bond Market Bear Creating Gold Bull Market - 19th Jan 18
Gold Stocks GDX $25 Breakout on Earnings - 19th Jan 18
SPX is Higher But No Breakout - 19th Jan 18
Game Changer for Bitcoin - 19th Jan 18
Upside Risk for Gold in 2018 - 19th Jan 18
Money Minute - A 60-second snapshot of the UK Economy - 19th Jan 18
Discovery Sport Real MPG Fuel Economy Vs Land Rover 53.3 MPG Sales Pitch - 19th Jan 18
For Americans Buying Gold and Silver: Still a Big U.S. Pricing Advantage - 19th Jan 18
5 Maps And Charts That Predict Geopolitical Trends In 2018 - 19th Jan 18
North Korean Quagmire: Part 2. Bombing, Nuclear Threats, and Resolution - 19th Jan 18
Complete Guide On Forex Trading Market - 19th Jan 18
Bitcoin Crash Sees Flight To Physical Gold Coins and Bars - 18th Jan 18
The Interest Rates Are What Matter In This Market - 18th Jan 18
Crude Oil Sweat, Blood and Tears - 18th Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport - Week 3 HSE Black Test Review - 18th Jan 18
The North Korea Quagmire: Part 1, A Contest of Colonialism and Communism - 18th Jan 18
Understand Currency Trade and Make Plenty of Money - 18th Jan 18
Bitcoin Price Crash Below $10,000. What's Next? We have answers… - 18th Jan 18
How to Trade Gold During Second Half of January, Daily Cycle Prediction - 18th Jan 18
More U.S. States Are Knocking Down Gold & Silver Barriers - 18th Jan 18
5 Economic Predictions for 2018 - 18th Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport - What You Need to Know Before Buying - Owning Week 2 - 17th Jan 18
Bitcoin and Stock Prices, Both Symptoms of Speculative Extremes! - 17th Jan 18
So That’s What Stock Market Volatility Looks Like - 17th Jan 18
Tips On Choosing the Right Forex Dealer - 17th Jan 18
Crude Oil is Starting 2018 Strong but there's Undeniable Risk to the Downside - 16th Jan 18
SPX, NDX, INDU and RUT Stock Indices all at Resistance Levels - 16th Jan 18
Silver Prices To Surge – JP Morgan Has Acquired A “Massive Quantity of Physical Silver” - 16th Jan 18
Carillion Bankruptcy and the PFI Sector Spiraling Costs Crisis, Amey, G4S, Balfour Beatty, Serco.... - 16th Jan 18
Artificial Intelligence - Extermination of Humanity - 16th Jan 18
Carillion Goes Bust, as Government Refuses to Bailout PFI Contractors Debt and Pensions Liabilities - 15th Jan 18
What Really Happens in Iran?  - 15th Jan 18
Stock Market Near an Intermediate Top? - 15th Jan 18
The Key Economic Indicator You Should Watch in 2018 - 15th Jan 18
London Property Market Crash Looms As Prices Drop To 2 1/2 Year Low - 15th Jan 18
Some Fascinating Stock Market Fibonacci Relationships... - 15th Jan 18
How to Know If This Stock Market Rally Will Continue for Two More Months? - 14th Jan 18
Everything SMIGGLE from Pencil Cases to Water Bottles, Pens and Springs! - 14th Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport Very Bad MPG Fuel Economy! Real Owner's Review - 14th Jan 18
Gold Miners’ Status Updated - 13th Jan 18
Gold And Silver – Review of Annual, Qrtly, Monthly, Weekly Charts. Reality v Sentiment - 13th Jan 18
Gold GLD ETF Update.. Bear Market Reversal Watch - 13th Jan 18
Stock Market Leadership In 2018 To Come From Oil & Gas - 13th Jan 18
Stock Market Primed for a Reversal - 13th Jan 18
Live Trading Webinar: Discover 3 High-Confidence Trade Set-Ups - 13th Jan 18
Optimum Entry Point for Gold and Silver Stocks - 12th Jan 18
Stock Selloffs Great for Gold - 12th Jan 18
These 3 Facts Show Gold Is Set to Surge in 2018 - 12th Jan 18
How China is Locking Up Critical Resources in the US’s Own Backyard - 12th Jan 18
Stock futures are struggling. May reverse Today - 12th Jan 18
Three Surprising Places You See Cryptocurrency - 12th Jan 18
Semi Seconductor Stocks Canary Still Chirping, But He’s Gonna Croak in 2018 - 12th Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport Panoramic Sunroof Questions Answered - 12th Jan 18
Information About Trading With Alpari And Its Advantages - 12th Jan 18

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

6 Critical Money Making Rules

Russia Bolivia to Launch Natural Gas Joint Venture

Commodities / Natural Gas Oct 14, 2009 - 11:26 AM GMT

By: F_William_Engdahl

Commodities

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleThe latest news report that Russia will sign an agreement with the Bolivian government to explore and produce natural gas is a significant setback for US domination of its traditional Latin American sphere of influence. Since it was declared in 1823 as the Monroe Doctrine, the United States, especially its banking elites have regarded South America as a de facto ‘American plantation.’ The move by Russia’s state-owned Gazprom into Bolivia must be seen as Moscow’s asymmetric geopolitical response to US expansion of NATO to the doorstep of Moscow in recent years. The US is ill-prepared to counter with any economic incentive.


Gazprom Deputy CEO, Alexander Medvedev, announced at a recent energy conference in Argentina that they would sign a final agreement in the coming weeks with the Bolivian state oil and gas company, YFBP, for a major joint venture to develop Bolivia’s huge natural gas reserves. Bolivia has the second largest gas reserves (1.5 trillion cubic meters) in South America after Venezuela. Its key gas reserves are concentrated in the country's southeast in Santa Cruz.

The Russian gas deal follows talks with Moscow on increased Russian military aid to the Bolivian armed forces following a US cut-off of all aid.

Bolivia’s President, Evo Morales, the country's first fully indigenous head of state in the 470 years since the Spanish Conquest, has been on the target list of Washington since his popular election in 2005. In September 2008 Morales expelled the US Ambassador, accusing him of fomenting opposition riots and protests against Morales. One week later, the Bush Administration responded by putting Bolivia on the “counter-narcotics” blacklist, cutting all US foreign aid. Curiously, the list is small, including only three countries, all firm opponents of US policies—Bolivia, Venezuela and Burma (Myanmar). Countries such as Mexico, Afghanistan, Colombia are not cited by Washington suggesting there might be another agenda there.

In January 2009 Morales again won a decisive national referendum allowing him to run for re-election and to take steps to control large landholdings. With a 60 per cent "Yes" vote, Morales can seek re-election in December 2009. As well, under the new powers, rich landowners may be targeted for dispossession as the state now only allows private ownership of large estates, Latifundistas, if the land is put to ‘social use.’ If not, the land may be seized by the state and redistributed. As well the referendum gave the state more power over its energy resources.

War over water and energy

The US interest in Bolivia is little other than crass exploitation of that country’s huge resources. Washington sent Harvard “shock therapy” economist Jeffrey Sachs to Bolivia in the 1980’s to impose his radical therapy which killed inflation and did nothing to alleviate the severe poverty. It did open up the resources of the country to cheap exploitation by foreign multinationals like BP and ExxonMobil as well as British and American water companies.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney’s old firm Halliburton had plans to exploit Bolivia’s natural gas for export. In 2002 popular outrage over the generous terms given by an earlier pro-US government to Halliburton led to nationwide protests, dubbed the “Bolivian Gas War” by media.

With growing popular protests and national strikes against foreign exploitation of the country’s resources, the Bolivian Congress passed a new Hydrocarbons Law in 2005 that partially re-nationalized the energy resources, while allowing foreign companies to lease, albeit on less generous terms. YPFB had been privatized in 1996 and British firms BP and BG along with Halliburton and ExxonMobil immediately came in then to build a multi-billion dollar gas pipeline to export LNG to California. Cheney’s Halliburton was the main construction contractor.  

Morales won a landslide election victory in December 2005 on a pledge to use the country’s resources to develop the country’s economy, one of the poorest in South America. Since that time Washington has covertly been supporting various opposition groups in Santa Cruz province in the region of the gas and huge fresh water resources.

On May 1, 2006, President Morales signed a decree stating that all gas reserves were to be nationalized: "the state recovers ownership, possession and total and absolute control" of hydrocarbons. Since then the government's energy-related revenue doubled and has increased six-fold from 2002. Foreign companies were either compensated for their holdings as with Shell, or continued to work but as minority partners with the state.

Bush finds a ‘retirement’ ranch

Shortly before leaving office, according to South American media reports, then President George W. Bush drew considerable attention in Bolivia with reports he had arranged to buy a huge tract of land on the Triple Frontier border of Paraguay, Brazil and Bolivia “to retire.” Bush reportedly bought some 40000 hectares of land in Chaco, Paraguay, near a US military base. Significantly, the land is reportedly located in Paso de Patria, near Bolivian gas reserves and the Guarani indigenous water region, within the Triple Border. The Guarani Aquifer is one of the largest underground water reserves in South America, running beneath Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, and larger than Texas and California together.

South America is now all but lost to US influence, with only Colombia, a stalwart ally, and Peru considered still in Washington’s geopolitical orbit. The rest of the region has now swung against US influence, led by Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, who has cultivated anti-US allies like Iran and Cuba, and has now invited the Russian air force and navy to exercise in the Caribbean. Bolivia’s Morales has strong ties to the governments of Venezuela, Ecuador and recently of  Paraguay, where former Bishop Fernando Lugo won an upset victory in April 2008 breaking the 61 year domination of the right-wing military Colorado Party.

The Bolivia-Russia Gazprom deal further secures a degree of economic independence for Bolivia from the historical US economic domination. For Russia, it offers an excellent chance to up pressure on the United States in its backyard, its traditional “sphere of influence” in the Americas, long considered a Rockefeller family plantation. Given its deepening domestic economic crisis, the Obama Administration has few cards to play beyond trying to create chaos in the region. It has little positive to offer Bolivia or any of its neighbors. The process is like a ‘Grade B’ rerun of the collapse of the British Empire in Africa and the Indian Subcontinent after the Second World War.

By F. William Engdahl
www.engdahl.oilgeopolitics.net

*F. William Engdahl, author of Full Spectrum Dominance: Totalitarian Democracy in the New World Order (Third Millennium Press), may be reached via his website, www.engdahl.oilgeopolitics.net.

COPYRIGHT © 2009 F. William Engdahl. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

F. William Engdahl Archive

© 2005-2018 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules