“If the government of Bolivia decides to nationalize, what we will have to do is adapt,” declared Minister of Mines and Energy, Dilma Rousseff, after meeting with members of the São Paulo Industrial Federation (Fiesp).
“Petrobras will stay in Bolivia as long as it can legally stay. This nationalization process does not appear to entail the expulsion of any companies,” said the Minister, adding that there was no danger of an immediate gas shortage in Brazil.
Demonstrators in Bolivia have called for the nationalization of the country’s gas reserves and on occasion have interrupted the flow of the Brazil-Bolivia gas pipeline.
Rousseff said that the gas supply from Bolivia for Brazilian industries, homes and thermoelectric power plants was ensured for two more weeks.
Brazil imports 24 million cubic meters of gas from Bolivia daily, which is the equivalent of half of total Brazilian consumption. Much of the Bolivian gas is piped into the São Paulo industrial sector which uses almost 9 million cubic meters daily.
Meanwhile, the president of Fiesp, Paulo Skaf, declared that the situation is unpredictable and that the important thing was to remain calm and avoid unnecessary alarm.