Argentina owes three invoices for the purchase of Bolivian natural gas, according to sources close to the Government. According to estimates by the consultancy Gas Energy Latin America (GELA), the amount to be paid reaches $246 million.
Sales to Bolivia from the Iquique Free Zone (Zofri) in northern Chile fell by 20% in 2019. Data published by Zofri on its website shows that, in 2018, Bolivia bought goods worth $617 million, while last year sales reached $494 million.
A technical commission from Bolivia is in Argentina to start negotiations for the signing of a new addendum to the gas purchase agreement and to stabilize the volumes demanded by the neighbouring country. Bolivia’s YPFB president, Herland Soliz, explained that the current contract addendum establishes export volumes of Bolivian gas of between 16 and 18 million cubic meters per day (MMmcd) in winter and from 10 MMmcd to 11 MMmcd in Summer.
The President of the United States, Donald Trump, announced that the restrictions of aid to Bolivia were lifted. The aid will begin on the 2020 fiscal year (from 1 October 2019 to 30 September 2020). The US restricted aid since 2017 after consider that the country was failing in its anti-drug policy.
Brazilian company Petrobras announced that it is possible to reduce its natural gas import contract from Bolivia to a volume of 12 million to 20 million cubic meters per day (MMm3/d). Thus, the company needs to sign an annexe with Bolivian Fiscal Oilfields (YPFB).
U.S. disruption of the global economic order reaches a major milestone on Tuesday as the World Trade Organization (WTO) loses its ability to intervene in trade wars, threatening the future of the Geneva-based body. Two years after starting to block appointments, the United States will finally paralyze the WTO’s Appellate Body, which acts as the supreme court for international trade.
The United Nations on Thursday demanded further assistance to facilitate the development of landlocked countries, such as Bolivia and Paraguay, which face particular difficulties over their geographical situation in combating poverty. The UN General Assembly adopted a declaration calling for more financial support for these nations and more cooperation to facilitate their access to international trade.
Brazil’s national agency for petroleum, natural gas and biofuels (ANP) says that, until fresh Bolivian elections are conducted, discussions will remain suspended. To further complicate things, Petrobras still has considerable unsupplied gas credits under the expiring contract which could last an additional two to four years.
“The situation is complicated and difficult,” said Bolivia’s Port Services Administration (ASP-B) Manager David Sánchez. Just before accusing Chile of violating the 1904 Peace Treaty by allowing a private company to unilaterally raise the port rates in Arica by 200%.
The agreement allows the creation of a market of close to 800 million people. It is hailed by both sides as a landmark in global policy making and a coup for their exporting companies.