Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Chavez proposes South American version of OPEC oil cartel

President Hugo Chavez is inviting South American leaders to create their own version of OPEC. The socialist president says the group known as Petrosur would link state oil and gas companies in a system like OPEC, which sets production quotas for members. Venezuela has South America's largest reserves: 310 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Chavez doesn't expect oil prices to fall below US$100 a barrel and says Venezuela is willing to donate US$1 per exported barrel to finance South American farmers. Chavez met with regional leaders in Argentina on Tuesday. He praised Brazil's sugarcane-based biofuels industry, but not the United States' 'crazy' use of corn for the fuel.

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