Beware of oil pundits

Free Market News Network
by Alvaro Vargas Llosa

06/01/06

Those who espouse clever government-led solutions to high oil prices should bear in mind that new discoveries have outpaced consumption for a number of years, but too much bureaucratic interference has hampered supply. Restrictions on building new refineries and pipelines in the U.S. have kept prices up and increased America's dependence on foreign energy. Half of Europe's motorists already use diesel fuel, but the lack of refining capacity to turn heavy crude into diesel has made the rest of the world rely a lot more on light crude, pushing up its price. And, of course, supply would be higher if almost 80 percent of oil reserves did not belong to incompetent government-owned companies around the world, such as in Russia, Sudan and Nigeria. Not to mention that huge tariffs on imports of Brazilian sugar cane have hampered the development of ethanol in the U.S. (Brazil's use of ethanol as an energy source has been a huge success.) Why make matters worse by meddling further?

http://www.fmnn.com/Analysis/175/5121/2006-06-01.asp?nid=5121&wid=175


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

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