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The core idea behind a resource nationalism perspective is that natural resources belong to the nation and should be used for its benefit above all. Every Latin American country owns its subsoil resources, which is the global norm, though not the case in the US or Canada. Nevertheless, the translation of resource nationalism into an energy policy varies across Latin America, as each country sets the terms for exploration, production, transportation and distribution of energy. Within this context three issues drive energy politics and thus energy policy: the distribution of rents derived from the resources (i.e., between public-private, rural-urban and among classes); the role of the market (i.e., international-domestic; for production or consumption); and the need to keep a level of investment in the sector that will replace reserves and produce a certain level of energy. The presentation will review these variations and offer a preliminary argument to explain them.
Professor Mares holds the Institute of the Americas chair for Inter-American Affairs. Mares has been Professor of the Centro de Estudios Internacionales at El Colegio de Mexico, Fulbright Professor at the Universidad de Chile and Visiting Professor at FLACSO-Ecuador. Professor Mares is the author of five books, Penetrating the International Market (also published in Spanish); Violent Peace: Militarized Interstate Bargaining in Latin America; Drug Wars and Coffeehouses; Latinoamrica: 'existe?; Coming in From the Cold: Chile-United States Relations at the Millenium (with Francisco Rojas); and editor of Civil-Military Relations: Building Democracy and Regional Security in Latin America, Southern Asia and Central Europe. His publications have appeared in English, Spanish, French and Chinese in journals such as Comparative Politics, International Organization, Latin American Research Review, Foro Internacional, Estudios Internacionales and Fuerzas Armadas y Sociedad and he has served on the editorial board of Latin American Research Review. Professor Mares has been a member of the international advisory boards of the Instituto Latinoamericano de Relaciones Civiles-Militares (based in Peru) and the Center for U.S.-Mexico Studies at UCSD, and prepared reports for the Carnegie Foundation, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, the Netherlands Institute of International Relations, as well as the Arias Foundation for Human Progress and Development.