[QODLink]
Europe
Bolivia welcomes foreign investment
President tries to allay fears over nationalisation plans.
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2009 02:00 GMT
King Juan Carlos, left, met Morales
in Madrid on Monday [EPA]

Bolivia is ready to accept outside investment in its energy and natural resource industries as long as foreign firms do not act as owners, the country's president has said.

Evo Morales' comments in the Spanish capital Madrid come as he tries to allay concerns over his plan to nationalise the Bolivian electricity sector, which could hit several Spanish firms in the country.

"Companies that respect Bolivian norms will be welcomed," Morales told a meeting of business representatives, politicians and journalists on Monday.

"We're looking for investment, be it from private or state sector. We want partners, not owners of our natural resources."

Morales, who met King Juan Carlos of Spain on Monday, is expected to hold formal talks with Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, the Spanish prime minister, on Tuesday.

Colombia ties

The Bolivian leader said that relations between La Paz and Spanish energy companies have been positive, and added that Bolivia will try to negotiate with Spanish and European companies to produce car parts and lithium batteries.

Morales also spoke about Colombia's agreement with the US government to allow US troops to use military bases in the country.

He called the deal a move by Washington to interfere in the Latin American region, echoing comments by Hugo Chavez, his Venezuelan counterpart.

But Bolivia does not intend to sever relations with Colombia or the United States over the deal, he said.

"Bolivia is not going to break off relations with anyone, not the United States," he said.

"Nobody can prevent us having relationships with other countries."

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Iran's government has shifted its take on 'brain drain' but is the change enough to reverse the flow?
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
Activists say 'Honor Diaries' documentary exploits gender-based violence to further an anti-Islamic agenda.
As Syria's civil war escalates along the Turkish border, many in Turkey are questioning the country's involvement.
Treatment for autism in the region has progressed, but lack of awareness and support services remains a challenge.
join our mailing list