Welcome to the Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean. If you would like your posts included in the next carnival please email me: faustaw2 "at" gmail "dot" com.
This week's two big stories: Cuba and oil, and Obama on Colombia.
Cuba claims massive oil reserves.
The BBC ran the story last Friday, and the numbers come from - where else - the Cuban government, which claims more than double the previous estimate of oil reserves:
I asked oil industry expert and former PDVSA board member Gustavo Coronel his opinion on these figures and he replied,
The US Geological Survey (USGS) recently estimated that as much as 9bn barrels of oil and 21 trillion cubic feet of natural gas could lie within that zone, in the North Cuba Basin.
However, Cubapetroleo exploration manager Rafael Tenreyro Perez said his company's estimate was higher because it had better information about Cuba's offshore geology.
"I'm almost certain that if [USGS officials] ask for all the data we have, their estimate is going to grow considerably," he told a news conference in the capital, Havana.
If correct, Cuba's oil reserves would be almost the same as those of the US - 21bn barrels, according to the Oil & Gas Journal - and nearly twice the size of Mexico's - 11.7bn barrels.
No country can claim oil reserves unless some basic requirements can be met:Sherritt indeed has canceled its agreement for operations in Cuban waters, saying the ventures were not viable:
sufficient geophysical exploration,
sufficient number of confirmatory wells,
clear definition of the dimensions of the reservoir,
certainty that the production of the oil can be economically done.
All of this and more is necessary before a country can claim to have X barrels of oil reserves.
Cuba, so far, has done NO one of these things. In fact, one of the very few companies looking for oil in this area of Cuban territorial waters, SHERRITT, a Canadian company (I think) just CALLED IT QUITS, gave up its rights to continue exploration. Why would a company do this
if there were the enormous oil "reserves" claimed by Cuba?
Sherritt's evaluation was that exploration activity was not worth continuing, an option available within its contract, said Cupet Exploration Director Rafael Tenreyro. "They have their reasons for not continuing," he said.That's the same Rafael Tenreyro Perez who claims that Cuba has twice as much oil as anyone else's estimate. Earlier this year Sherritt had relenquished its deepwater blocks off Cuba because it could not attract a partner to share the development costs and risks.
So much for the facts on the Cuban claims. But don't be surprised if you hear about it in the media. After all, they keep praising Cuba's healthcare even when Fidel himself had to import a gastroenterologist/oncologist to save himself.
Oil? More like snake oil.
Obama Is Wrong About Colombia: Labor unions are much safer under Uribe.
It is far safer to be a union member today in Colombia than to be a member of the general population. This is a fact, and it would be interesting to know why Mr. Obama has repeatedly refused to acknowledge it.Here's Mary Anastasia O'Grady:
Is it because of his heavy reliance on campaign contributions from the antitrade AFL-CIO? Or perhaps, like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Mr. Obama has an ideological bias in favor of Colombia's hard left. If it's the latter, then it is worth asking whether an Obama presidency would change U.S. foreign policy to look more favorably on insurgents of the FARC variety.
Trade winds: Finally, a deal with Europe
Bad Bets: Currency worries in Brazil and Mexico
Rediscovering Latin America
Argentina faces court battle over airline
Live search maps for Argentina
Letter of the Civil Society of Cochabamba to the International Community - Comite Civico de Cochabamba
Brazil's Future Going the Way of Oil
Police battle police in Sao Paulo. video
The FARC’s shrinking world
Defector Recounts Escape: Alcantara One of Two Players to Leave Team During U.S.
Via Babalu, The Ghosts of Communism
The sounds of tyranny
Ecuador’s New Constitution First to Guarantee Rights to Nature
Correa warns against “illegitimate” debt
Ecuador is not a democracy
Cardenal ecuatoriano ataca al gobierno frente al Papa
Ecuador vs. Democracy
Cae una importante red de narcos colombianos en México
Via LGF linkviewer, State Department warns against travel to Mexico: Deadliest drug zone invites Americans to tour 'land of encounters'
Mexico to deport Cuban migrants
Periodistas de Nicaragua cargan contra Daniel Ortega por “dictador”
Return of Peru's Shining Path as terror movement kills 19 soldiers
Peru’s unloved president: Pursued by the ghosts of the past
A minor earthquake hit Puerto Rico on Saturday, Magnitude 3.0 - PUERTO RICO REGION causing no damage.
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO
Enill: T&T has 64 years worth of oil and gas reserves
Just as the country is hit by a huge electrical blackout (the third one this year), Sean Penn is back in Venezuela for an unannounced visit: Sean Penn llega a Venezuela y se reúne con Hugo Chávez (+ Fotos) If you’re fluent in Spanish, you’ll love the comments (most not suitable for work!) .
Those exquisite little moments that bring you a big smile on your face
Oil-Fueled Nation Feels Pinch
As the Price of Crude Plunges, Venezuela Is Poised to Face a Lot of Pain
Venezuelans have no Electricity nor Water this October 19, 2008
Feeling the pinch: Chavez Says Oil Between $80 and $90 Is `Sufficient'
What will Chávez do without Castro?
Vivanco speaks out
Terrorist worship in Venezuela
Hugo Chavez Celebrates End of Free Markets, Demands Recipe for Chicken-Fried Bacon
NPR Touts Hugo Chavez, End to 'Free Market Fundamentalism'
Venezuela's government looking to establish new 6-hour workday
Hurricane fears ease in Caribbean
Palin Thwarts The Gas Cartel
Stances on trade are worlds apart
On trade agreements, Obama's playing with fire
Special thanks to Eneas, GoV, Maggie, and Maria.
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Labels: Argentina, Barack Obama, Bolivia, Brazil, Caribbean, Carnival of Latin America, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Hugo Chavez, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, politics, Puerto Rico, Trinidad Tobago, Venezuela