By Peter M. Tase
On December 5th, President Federico Franco of Paraguay began a two-day official visit to Miami, invited by local petrochemical companies that are planning to explore oil in the the Chaco region of the South American country.
In one of his interviews, Franco stated that Paraguay has the largest oil reserves in Latin America and is looking forward to receiving US investors to conduct further studies in the Chaco. One day before his departure, the president visited the city of Neuland (about 350 miles from capital city Asuncion) and with representatives of President Energy Company led the symbolic act of officially beginning the oil exploration in Chaco, in which President Energy is expected to invest $92 Million. Seismic exploration trucks have already undertaken tests and exploratory drilling is set to begin.
In Miami, Franco met with representatives of President Energy in Miami and noted that the exploration of oil in Paraguay “means a tremendous added value for [Paraguay’s] economy.” Franco “highly values Paraguay’s potential for energy independence and the its significance to secure an added value from oil and its byproducts.”
He added that “[oil exploration] will open a new area of development for the country, and further enhance what we already have in the agricultural sector and create value with our existing strategic resources.” Franco received details of the latest digital technology in studies of geo-seismology undertaken by President Energy Co. in the territory of Pirity and Boqueron in the Paraguayan Chaco region. It was in the Chaco region that Paraguay fought a brief war with neighboring Bolivia in the 1930s, ostensibly over possible petroleum reserves. It is in the same region that it currently faces a restless insurgency.
The senior leadership of President Energy, Peter Levine and Richard Gonzalez, presented the rese search and methodology that confirm prospects for oil in Paraguay. According to President Energy analysis, there have been identified more than 150 million barrels of high quality crude oil, which can be refined at the state-owned Petróleos Paraguayos (Petropar) refinery at Villa Elisa in central Paraguay.
Franco, accompanied by two members of his cabinet: Minister of Industry and Trade Francisco Rivas and Minister of Schedules Fernando Pfannl, was given briefings on the technology, industrial equipment and logistics that will be installed once the oil exploration has begun in Chaco. Also joining Franco were Senators Blas Llano and Robert Acevedo.
President Franco met also with the leadership of Brightstar, who confirmed their interest in establishing headquarters in Paraguay in order to assemble 30,000 computers per month. Brightstar will fulfill the demand of supplying computers to Paraguayan children, while the surplus will be exported overseas. Brightstar is a global company, headquartered in Miami, and is dedicated to computer and cell phone production technology.
Also, in an exclusive interview with Speroforum in Paraguay, Franco confirmed his government’s desire for closer economic and political ties to the United States. This was confirmed last month when American Airlines began direct flights to the Paraguayan capital from the U.S. Franco’s government and Paraguayan exporters are still experiencing the fallout of Paraguay’s suspension from the MERCOSUR regional trade bloc. Paraguay’s absence from a crucial vote allowed Venezuela to become a member of MERCOSUR, despite Paraguay’s long-standing opposition. Paraguayan exporters complain of bureaucratic delays at the border with Argentina, while Paraguay struggles with diplomatic wrangling over its impeachment and removal of former President Fernando Lugo this year. The Organization of American States, however, has confirmed the constitutionality and legality of Lugo’s dismissal.
Peter M. Tase is a long-time observer of Paraguayan political affairs and trade matters. He writes forSperoforum, from where this article is adapted.
By Peter M. Tase
By Peter M Tase
By Peter M. Tase
Wednesday, December 05, 2012
By Peter M. Tase
Therefore, country such as Japan, Brazil, Hong Kong and Taiwan, that are interested in Stevia production, have improved certain technologies related to the assembly sector as well as industrial processing; product refinement and Stevia’s applications in the industry. According to a report published by PriceWaterhousecoopers, Sustainable development has progressed steadily in the last decade that should be considered as a good sign for the growth of food industry.
There is a growing number of companies that are becoming aware of sustainable development and are focused towards implementing environmental friendly practices and product development. In developed economies fair trade practices and respect of labor law are principal components of assuring a successful presence in the market. Consumers are convinced that sustainable practice and reduction of employees’ exploitation are the core values which encourage them to purchase a particular product.
There are a number of factors that contribute to new market tendencies that are in accordance with new preferences encouraged and supported by customers;
1 – Global Market Forces; 2 – New vision for large corporations management, 3 – Large Scale globalization.
According to Sunny Misser, a U.S. marketing strategist: “Sustainable business balance their economic interests to suit the needs of socially and environmentally responsible customers, the companies that succeed in the long term are those that incorporate ethical considerations into their decision-making policy, and are administered on the basis of personal integrity and broad implementation of organizational values.”
Consumers are increasing their ethical awareness; according Pejling, a Swedish magazine of the Association of Dairy Producers: “70% of Swedish consumers have a ‘blacklist’ of products and companies that do not meet the ‘personal standards’” related to social and environmental responsibility.
Stevia or Ka’a He’ê, is one of the highly acclaimed products that brings the consumer closer to farmers, by paying a fair trade price and additionally, consumers support organic production of stevia which is healthier and safe to environment sustainability.
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Bolivia poised to become new MERCOSUR member
Spero News Saturday 24th November, 2012
Mercosur member countries should vote unanimously in order to accept a new member country into its cradle. Bolivia’s accession, the same as Venezuela’s on July
By Peter M. Tase
Stevia producers and farmers gathered in November 13-14, 2012 in Asuncion to discuss current challenges and accomplishments in their initiatives.Under the framework of the VI International Symposium of Stevia, President Federico Franco informed participants that Stevia or Ka’aHe’ê hs been declared as a plant of Paraguayan genetic heritage. The Head of State announced substantial investments to encourage the cultivation of this natural non-caloric sweetener, discovered by Moise GiacomoBertoni in 1887.
Stevia is a herbaceous plant and native to Paraguay that is making inroads worldwide as an alternative to traditional sugars – derived from sugar cane, sugar beets and maize – as a sweetener. It is widely used as a sweetener in Asia, and its use is growing in the United States and elsewhere.Stevia is a naturally low-calorie sweetener and has been described as a boon to people suffering with diabetesand/or obesity.
The President of Paraguayan Chamber of SteviaProduction (CAPASTE), Juan Barbosa, asked government representatives to enact legislation that encourages Steviaproduction as well as developing a certification stamp that would accompany Paraguay’s stevia products exported abroad. President Franco’s government introduced in this symposium a number of initiatives in to increase production, processing and marketing of SteviaRebaudiana Bertoni in the international markets.
The president noted that: “the Ministry of Agriculture and Dairy (MAG) products, is planning to invest over USD 2 million towards the production of Ka’a He’ê for the last quarter of 2013 and following next year.”
Production of stevia sprouts requires modern technology; the Paraguayan ministry of Agriculture is working to develop techniques, tools and research labs to facilitate the cultivation of stevia on a larger scale.
Enzo Cardozo, the minister of Agriculture, expressed his commitment that “the Ministry of Agriculture will create programs of training, research and expand Stevia plantations across the country, in order to transform Paraguay into a top producer of stevia on the world stage.
Paraguayan farmers have cultivated more than 2,200 hectares of stevia plants. Other countries in the region such as Argentina, Ecuador and Colombia are directing their energies towards large scale production of stevia.
Spero columnist Peter M Tase writes on Latin America and trade issues.
Read the article: STEVIA: INDIGENOUS PLANT OF PARAGUAY
By Peter M. Tase and Arta Musara
Monday, November 19, 2012
Albania has always been considered a unique example of co-existence in terms of religion and culture. Past records show that independently from historic and political settings, Albanians showed a friendly behavior towards each other’s religious tendency. The relation of Albanian’s with religion has not been a constant one.
Read the article: Albania celebrates 100 years of religious tolerance