KICHWA SAY NO TO ARGENTINE OIL COMPANY IN PERU’S AMAZON

Kichwa from the River Tigre in Peru’s northern Amazon say they refuse to permit Pluspetrol Norte, a joint venture between Argentina’s Pluspetrol and the China National Petroleum Corporation, to continue in their territories. Pluspetrol’s licence for Peru’s biggest oil concession, Lot 1-AB, expires on 29 August. Perupetro states it has abandoned an attempt to hold an “international tender” for the concession, effectively renamed as Lot 192, and it is now “negotiating directly." “The Kichwa people from the River Tigre don’t want Pluspetrol,” Fernando Chupe, president of indigenous organisation FECONAT, tells me. But what if Pluspetrol is awarded the concession? “The Kichwa people will rise up,” Chupe says. Pluspetrol took over Lot 1-AB in 2000, following US company Occidental. It includes the River Tigre, River Corrientes and River Pastaza - all recently declared environmental emergency zones after more than 40 years of oil contamination. (09-08-2015)

David Hill