David R. Mares

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date



Energy policy is usefully characterized by the degree to which resource nationalism and energy security are pursued. The balance achieved between these two key concepts dramatically affects global energy supplies. Over the past century, both of these ideas have played particularly significant roles in Latin America, where the oil industry first developed outside the US, and an area that continues to draw the attention of the world market. Because Latin America is a growing source of hydrocarbons for the world market, its energy policies are of increasing importance. The challenge is to understand why a country works with or against market forces in the energy sector. This working paper explores the impact of these energy policies on global oil supply by applying an argument about the determinants of energy policies of oil and gas exporters, and explores ways to influence these determinants to ensure the development of the region's resources for the benefit of people within and beyond the region.


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James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, Rice University