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Argentine congress to vote bill discriminating companies working in the Falklands

Wednesday, June 23rd 2010 - 04:17 UTC
Full article 38 comments
International oil companies operating in the Falklands would be banned from Argentina     International oil companies operating in the Falklands would be banned from Argentina

Argentina’s Lower House issued on Tuesday a majority opinion, without dissent, on the bill that contemplates sanctions for companies that operate in Argentina and that wish to participate or are involved in oil activities in the Falklands/Malvinas Islands area under British administration.

In this way, the initiative is now ready to be treated on the floor, as it already counts with the support of all the blocs in the Lower House. The decision was brought about by the Energy, Foreign Affairs, and Maritime, River, Fishing, and Port committees, on the bill boosted by Proyecto Sur party head Fernando “Pino” Solanas.

Argentina’s Lower House took the new step towards passing the bill precisely when tensions between the Argentine government and the UK are escalating following on the oil exploration round sponsored by the government of the Falkland Islands, and a few hours before the Falklands, UK and Argentina are forecasted to clash at the United Nations Decolonization Committee next Thursday.

The bill, which carries the signatures of all political groups with congressional representation, seeks to take away the licences of companies that operate in Argentina and that are linked with others that explore or exploit hydrocarbons in the Falkland Islands.

At the same time, the document stipulates that every company that operates in Argentina “needs previous authorization extended by the competent national authority in order to carry out transactions and/or business, financial, and extractive operations with those companies or physical persons that, in direct or indirect ways” act in the Malvinas Islands.

It also “prohibits all national or international trading companies that operate in Argentina, along with their shareholders or comptrollers, with direct or indirect participation” in exploration and exploitation activities that are carried out in Malvinas, from being contracted by the Argentine government.

If a company does not oblige by these dispositions, ”the Application Authority will proceed to suspend the authorization to work in the country, until the sanction application”.

Former president Néstor Kirchner imposed, in 2007, restrictions to oil companies that operated with the British government in Malvinas Islands.

According to opposition sources the bill is to be considered Wednesday by the whole House; however the government benches anticipated they would not show up thus endangering the necessary quorum to hold the session.

President Cristina Kirchner will be in Toronto over the weekend for the G-20 leaders’ summit and it is highly doubtful she would like to arrive with such a controversial and discriminatory piece of legislation in her brief case.

Top Comments

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  • Beef

    So Argentina is going to close every branch of all the international banks and corporations that have invesments in the Falkland Island oil expo companies (e.g. Barclays - that arranged Argentinas debt swap deal).

    Argentina decides to ignore the democratic rights of the Islanders and wants to restrict international business. With that and CFKs dodgy back street deals with Chavez (yes a dictator), Argentina is on a slippery slope to further financial difficulty. Election in 2011 anyone!

    Jun 23rd, 2010 - 06:26 am 0
  • Idlehands

    This is laughable

    Even babies learn that if they throw all their toys from their pram all they end up with is no toys to play with.

    Jun 23rd, 2010 - 06:36 am 0
  • J.A. Roberts

    This will be just as effective as the presidential shipping decree in February. Nothing will change...

    Jun 23rd, 2010 - 07:40 am 0
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