TEXT OF STORY
Doug Krizner: The foreign minister of Myanmar had harsh words at the U.N. last night for critics of his country’s internal politics.
And he said the use of economic sanctions against country is counterproductive.
Sanctions were put in place by the U.S., and now the Bush Administration is grappling with the potential unintended consequences. More from John Dimsdale.
John Dimsdale: In response to human rights abuses, the U.S. imposed economic sanctions on the Myanmar regime in 2003. However, Chevron’s longtime 28 percent stake in an oil project there was given a grandfather exemption. Profits from the multinational oil project are a major source of revenue for the military junta.
With the military’s recent deadly crackdown on dissent, the White House is considering forcing Chevron to cut its ties to Myanmar.
The president of the National Foreign Trade Council, William Reinsch, says that would not be a good idea:
William Reinsch: If we act by ourselves, all that’s gonna happen is that Chevron will be replaced by somebody else. It’ll keep operating and the generals continue to get the revenue.
Reinsch says the U.N. should act multilaterally against Myanmar, so no other foreign company can take over the oil field. But countries including China and India also have oil or natural gas operations in Myanmar, and are resisting U.N. sanctions.
In Washington, I’m John Dimsdale for Marketplace.
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