Turnabout in Bolivia as Economy Rises From Instability
LA PAZ, Bolivia — Argentina’s currency has plunged, setting off global worries about developing economies. Brazil is struggling to shake concerns over years of sluggish growth. Venezuela, which sits atop the world’s largest oil reserves, has one of the world’s highest inflation rates. Farther afield, countries like Turkey and South Africa have watched their currencies suffer as investors search for safer returns elsewhere. And then there is Bolivia.
Tucked away in the shadow of its more populous and more prosperous neighbors, tiny, impoverished Bolivia, once a perennial economic basket case, has suddenly become a different kind of exception — this time in a good way.
U.S.halts economic aid to Bolivia citing expulsion of USAID
The United States has halted all economic aid to Bolivia, because that country expelled representatives of the USAID last May, the Bolivian press reported.
USAID stands for U.S. Agency for International Development.
In 2006, when President Evo Morales took office, that aid amounted to about $40 million a year for programs of health care, environmental protection and economic development. That amount has since declined.
“Our economic support has always been delivered through the USAID, and, at the request of the Bolivian government, that agency no longer functions here, so economic support is no longer an issue between the two countries,” said Larry Memmott, U.S. chargé d’affaires in La Paz, interviewed by the radio station Fides on Thursday (Jan. 30).
Bolivia’s Indigenous Future: A Balance of Preservation, Protection and Connection
Evo Morales’s very name seems to suggest his destiny of leading Bolivia in a valiant attempt at ‘moral evolution’ with all other Nation States in tow. Tasked with the difficult role of representing his Indigenous roots at the national and international levels of government and policy, Morales continues to make great strides that by all appearances bridge the dichotomy of tradition and modernity. Recent evolutions in Bolivian national policy regarding the protection and preservation of indigenous cultures continue to gain legal traction. Simultaneously, more Bolivians than ever before are poised to claim their rightful place in the interconnected web that is the information age.
Bolivia inaugurates first wind farm
Following the recent inauguration of Bolivia’s first wind farm, the government of Bolivia has announced plans for the nation's first utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) plant, a 4-5 MW plant in the Pando Department near the Brazilian border.
The project will represent an investment of USD 11 million, with 60% of the funding coming from Denmark and the remaining 40% from Bolivia. The plant will be the first step of a three phase project, which will include building similar plants in other towns, and supplying PV systems to Bolivian families living in isolated regions.
Minister of the Presidency Juan Ramón Quintana has said that the plant will be deployed in August 2014, or September at the latest. The minister expects the plant to guarantee continuous power to five municipalities including Cobija, the capital of the Pando Department.
Indigenous Roots Appreciated and Preserved in Bolivia
By Courtney Parker*
Evo Morales’s very name seems to suggest his destiny of leading Bolivia in a valiant attempt at ‘moral evolution’ with all other Nation States in tow. Tasked with the difficult role of representing his Indigenous roots at the national and international levels of government and policy, Morales continues to make great strides that by all appearances bridge the dichotomy of tradition and modernity. Recent evolutions in Bolivian national policy regarding the protection and preservation of indigenous cultures continue to gain legal traction. Simultaneously, more Bolivians than ever before are poised to claim their rightful place in the interconnected web that is the information age. (See youtube for more insight: www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_GDGAaUEEp0)
Speech by Morales at U.N.
In his dramatic speech in New York, Bolivian President Evo Morales called for the UN to be moved out of the US and for Barack Obama to be tried for crimes against humanity. Speaking to RT, Morales explained his controversial proposals.
In his most controversial demand, Morales said that Obama should face an international trial with human rights watchdogs among the judges. The Bolivian president accused his US counterpart of instigating conflicts in the Middle East to make the region more volatile and to increase the US’s grip on the natural resources it abounds in. He gave Libya as an example of a country where “they arranged for the president to be killed, and they usurped Libya’s oil.”
Bolivian government authorizes workers to take over closed or abandoned firms
Richard Fidler, La Paz, Life on the Left
On October 7, President Evo Morales issued a government decree that allows workers to establish “social enterprises” in businesses that are bankrupt, winding up, or unjustifiably closed or abandoned. These enterprises, while private, will be operated by the workers and qualify for government assistance.
Morales issued Supreme Decree 1754 at a ceremony in the presidential palace marking the 62nd anniversary of the founding of the Confederación General de Trabajadores Fabriles de Bolivia (CGTFB – the General Confederation of Industrial Workers of Bolivia). The Minister of Labour, Daniel Santalla, said the decree was issued pursuant to article 54 of Bolivia’s new Constitution, which states that workers
Bolivia’s cogent responses to recent provocations from the Empire
Richard Fidler, La Paz
Washington’s refusal to allow Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro to over-fly its colony of Puerto Rico, September 19, attracted little attention in the North American and European media.
But in Latin America this arrogant gesture drew immediate outrage. It recalled the July 2 denial by four European countries — France, Italy, Spain and Portugal — of landing and refueling rights and passage through their airspace to Bolivia’s president Evo Morales while he was returning home from a trip to Moscow. This unprecedented attack on Bolivia’s sovereignty, clearly at Washington’s behest, had been defended on the fallacious grounds that Morales’ plane harboured US espionage whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
Transcript from THE REAL NEWS AT THE UNITED NATIONS:
David Dougherty: The United Nations General Assembly speeches were kicked off this year by opening speaker Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff. Her address was characterized by a scathing critique of the United States NSA spying program, which was recently revealed by documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden to have been actively spying on Brazil. Her speech set a stronger than usual tone critical of the United States that would be heard in several other speeches by left-leaning Latin American heads of state throughout the week.
U.S. President Obama is a criminal who Violates International Law
Bolivian President Evo Morales will file a lawsuit against the US government for crimes against humanity. He has decried the U.S. for its intimidation tactics and fear- mongering after the Venezuelan presidential jet was blocked from entering US airspace.
"I would like to announce that we are preparing a lawsuit against Barack Obama to condemn him for crimes against humanity,” said President Morales at a press conference in the Bolivian city of Santa Cruz. He branded the US president as a “criminal” who violates international law.