Last week Petrobras imposed a fine on Bolivia because during some months of last year the Bolivian state oil company (YPFB) sent only 22.6 million cubic meters (mcm) of gas when the demand was 26 mcm. The Gas Supply Agreement (GSA) signed with Brazil in 1996 – that expires this year- establishes a minimum purchase volume of 24 mcm of gas and maximum delivery of 30.08 mcm. If 1.5 mcm of fuel gas were included, a total of 31.5 mcm should be sent.
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“A multi-point agreement has been signed, including the exploitation of Bolivian lithium, due to India’s interest in buying lithium carbonate, as well as a possible partnership to build a lithium-battery plant in India, ” announced Bolivia’s state lithium company (YLB) CEO, Juan Carlos Montenegro. The idea of the lithium-battery plant is still in a macro plan that should be worked on in the coming months.
An increase in the world demand of lithium batteries is foreseen for the coming years, mainly in Asia, announced Bolivia’s state lithium company (YLB) director, Marco Kucharski. Only China plans to manufacture between 200 and 500 million electric vehicles, a trend that would benefit Bolivia who has one of the world’s largest lithium reserves. He also emphasized that the electronics and chemical sectors will be important consumers of the mineral, taking into account that planes today use a lithium-titanium alloy to perform operations.
The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) raised the growth projection for Bolivia from 4.3% to 4.4%, which means that the country will head the list of nations with the highest growth in the region, in 2019.
President Evo Morales confirmed yesterday, that the Government of India is willing to invest U$D 13 billion in Bolivia’s hydrocarbons sector. The statement was announced during an act in the city of Cobija, Pando.
The Head of State referred to this achievement after the first meeting he held with the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, in the city of Santa Cruz, on March 29.
During the meeting between the two leaders, a Joint Declaration was approved and eight complementary agreements were signed, that will benefit both countries. According to Morales, the areas covered the health, lithium and hydrocarbons sectors.
Bolivia had a trade surplus of more than US$500 million with India in 2018, said the CEO of the Bolivian Foreign Trade Institute (IBCE), Gary Rodríguez. Exports to India increased significantly since 2007. “Bolivia sold U$D 723 million and imported U$D 152 million, therefore the surplus reached U$D 517 million. We expect this kind of relationship in the country to shore up our International Reserves in the BCB.”
Bolivia has a 2030 development plan that will be based on lithium, affirmed President Evo Morales. He added that there are plans to build more than 40 lithium plants and some of them are under construction. The President pointed out, that the “2030 Plan” will also include the construction and industrialization plants of hydrocarbon gas pipelines to the Pacific.
According to Supreme Decree No. 3738 of December 7, 2018, the capital paid by the German company ACISA for a 70-year contract, at the time to constitute the Public Joint Venture with the Bolivian lithium state company (YLB-), was only US$ 739,224.
The Government asked Bolivian banks to repatriate capital from abroad to sort out an apparent minor liquidity problem in the financial sector. According to the Economy Minister, Luis Arce, Bolivian banks have a lot of dollars on foreign accounts, but they are not bringing back this capital. He added that the Government already asked them to repatriate this money.
With a call to preserve democracy and peace, the Interamerican Human Rights Court (CIDH) began in Sucre, Bolivia, its 171 term session. This is the first time that the organisation meets in Bolivia. The magistrates will review 25 civil organisation demands from 14 countries. The sessions will not include demands from the host country. However, they will listen without opinion the claims from Bolivian civil organisations thad demand the Government to comply with the results of the referendum of 21 February 2016 (21F), when 51% of voters denied President Evo Morales the possibility of rerunning this year for a fourth consecutive term.