Brazilian Minister Sees Long and Hard Negotiation Ahead with Bolivia on Gas Prices

The Minister of Foreign Relations of Brazil, Celso Amorim, said he favors the Brazil-Bolivia natural gas pipeline and emphasized that the relation of interdependency between the two countries comes from previous governments.

According to him, 92% of the US$ 1 billion Petrobras invested in Bolivia occurred between 1996 and 2002, and the remainder, between 2003 and 2005. "This demonstrates how Petrobras has been acting with caution during this government."

Amorim evaluated as appropriate the Brazilian government reaction to Bolivian decision of nationalizing its oil and gas reserves: dialogue and proper recognition of the situation.

The issue now, according to him, is to know if Brazilian interests will be respected. "In spite of all instability, Bolivia has been a reliable provider of natural gas to Brazil."

In the Minister’s opinion, talks about natural gas prices must follow a rational thread. According to him, Brazil buys 36% of all the gas Bolivia exports, and prices must follow the market.

He admitted that prices negotiations will be "long and difficult." For him, the occupation of Petrobras plants in Bolivia on May 1st was unnecessary.

Agência Brasil

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