Spain to Argentina: There Will Be Consequences for Hostility Toward Repsol

Spain to Argentina: There Will Be Consequences for Hostility Toward Repsol
The conflict between the Argentinian government and the Spanish business is far from being resolved
The Argentinian government will decide the future of Repsol’s affiliate today

El País: Soria advierte a Argentina: “La hostilidad [con Repsol] traerá consecuencias”
Carlos E. Cué reporting from Warsaw April 12, 2012

The conflict between the Argentinian government and Repsol-YPF is threatening to become an authentic diplomatic row of the first order. The Spanish government has been discrete until now, although it tried to mediate when the Minister of Industry, José Manuel Soria, traveled to Buenos Aires. Even the King of Spain has tried to stop the conflict. The president of Repsol, Antoni Brufau, has been in Buenos Aires for days looking for a solution. But it all seems useless.

Six Argentinian provinces have now revoked a dozen licenses from Repsol-YPF, sinking the company’s value in the Buenos Aires market. Today, the Spanish government decided to go on the attack. In a recording made by the executive department’s press agency at the doors of the Spanish embassy in Poland, where Spanish journalists could not be present and could not ask questions, Soria said, “The Government of Spain defends the interests of all Spanish businesses, within and without. If there are acts of hostility toward these interests anywhere in the world, the government will interpret them as acts of hostility toward Spain and the Spanish government. What this government is saying is that if there will be consequences for any acts of hostility.”

A diplomatic conflict seems inevitable. Repsol controls 53.47% of YPF, while the Argentinian group Petersen holds 25.46%. The President of Argentina, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, has encouraged the escalation against Repsol, which she accuses of not making sufficient investments in YPF, causing that company to decrease production and thus forcing Argentina to import petroleum. Repsol has promised to increase its investment, but the row, far from settling down, has worsened, and there is a risk that at the end of this process, Argentina will buy the company for a low price, which would be very damaging for the Spanish oil company.

Explore posts in the same categories: Business, Latinoamérica, Law, Politics, Spain, Translations

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