Glencore Seeks Bolivia Compensation After Mine Nationalization – by Jesse Riseborough (Bloomberg News – August 12, 2016)

Glencore Plc, the Swiss miner and commodities trader headed by billionaire Ivan Glasenberg, has started arbitration proceedings against Bolivia after three of its operations were nationalized by the country, the first in 2007.

The company has tried “to settle the dispute with the government of Bolivia amicably,” it said in an e-mailed statement. “However, after almost nine years of negotiations without receiving any compensation for the nationalization of three of its operations, Glencore had no other option but to initiate arbitration proceedings to enforce its rights under international law.”

Bolivia nationalized the Vinto tin smelter in 2007 and the Colquiri zinc and lead mine was handed to state mining company Comibol in 2012. The government also seized the Vinto antimony operation.

President Evo Morales has raised taxes and seized mines, oil refineries and power companies since taking power in 2006.

When Colquiri was seized four years ago, Glencore said it was completing the renegotiation of its mining contracts with the government. The mine was sold by the government in 2002 and Glencore acquired it from former President Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada in 2005.

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