Congressman Dan Burton (R-IN) expressed grave concern on the recent events occuring in Bolivia....
CHAIRMAN BURTON EXPRESSES DEEP CONCERN OVER THE FORCED NATIONALIZATION OF BOLIVIA'S NATURAL-GAS SECTOR BY PRESIDENT EVO MORALES
-CALLS ON PRESIDENT MORALES TO RE-EVALUATE HIS DECISION-
(Washington, D.C.) - Today, Congressman Dan Burton [R-IN-05], Chairman of the House International Relations Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere expressed his deep concern over the forced nationalization of Bolivia's natural-gas sector by President Evo Morales:
"Yesterday, following a trade mission to Communist Cuba where he signed a free trade agreement with Cuba and Venezuela, the newly-elected president of Bolivia, Evo Morales, announced the forced nationalization of Bolivia's natural-gas sector and ordered the Bolivian army to evict foreign companies from Bolivia's largest natural-gas fields."
"This Castro-Chavez inspired move heralds a troubling leftist slide towards state control and a hardening of nationalist social and economic policies in Bolivia, South America's poorest country. I strongly urge President Morales to re-evaluate his decision."
"Not only will forced nationalization hurt Bolivia's relations with its friends and neighbors, such as Brazil, but it could also have a negative impact on U.S. - Bolivia relations. Nationalization sends the wrong signal at the wrong time. Instead of fearing foreign investment and development aid, President Morales should welcome international companies into Bolivia and seek their assistance."
"I remain committed to improving U.S. - Bolivia relations in my capacity as Chairman of the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee, and I am more than willing to work with President Morales and the people of Bolivia, so we can enhance and promote our mutual interests."
"However, in order to do so, I strongly urge President Morales to re-evaluate his forced nationalization decision, or I fear he risks further isolating Bolivia and its people."
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