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Unocal giving up natural-gas explor
- Subject: Unocal giving up natural-gas explor
- From: moe@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Thu, 24 Apr 1997 17:25:00
Subject: Unocal giving up natural-gas exploration in Burma
Unocal giving up natural-gas exploration in Burma
April 23, 1997
10.18 a.m. EDT (1418 GMT)
SINGAPORE (AP) -- Unocal Corp., the biggest foreign investor in Burma, said
Wednesday it has given up developing two new natural gas fields because of
economic sanctions imposed by President Clinton.
Washington announced a ban Tuesday on new U.S. investment in Burma,
saying its military government has ignored appeals to ease repression and move
toward democratic rule. Clinton was expected to sign an order implementing
the sanctions later this week.
Burmese dissidents are calling for a boycott of business ties to the
saying foreign investment strengthens its grip on power while doing little to
help ordinary Burmese.
"We were going to look at one or two additional blocks in the offshore area in
the Andaman sea, but it's clear we would not be able to do it,'' John G.
Vandermeer, a Unocal vice president for new ventures in South and Southeast
Asia, told Dow Jones Newswires.
Vandermeer said Unocal also would forgo other investments in Burma, but he
declined to give details.
The company will go ahead with plans to look for gas southwest of the Yadana
field in the the Andaman Sea because it already is committed by a deal signed
with the Burmese government in January, he said.
A $750 million project to build a gas pipeline and power plant to supply
Rangoon, the Burmese capital, also will go forward as planned.
"That is an existing project. We have agreements in place on that one,''
Vandermeer said. "It's simply one of the number of projects ongoing in the
He said, however, that the legal line separating new investments banned by the
sanctions from existing projects that are allowed to continue was unclear.
"It's something we have to see how the legislation defines,'' he said. "We
to work within the law but maintain our commitment to projects and Southeast
Asia in general.''