Argentina’s Senate committee has taken the first step towards nationalising the country’s top oil company after it agreed on the outline of the bill.
President Cristina Fernandez wants the state to seize a 51 per cent controlling interest in YPF from Spain’s Repsol.
Argentina also wants another Repsol-controlled company YPF Gas.
Anibal Fernandez a Buenos Aires Senator said:
“I don’t have any more information other than what I am offering you. What I will say is that we are going to have a project that concerns a gas company that we are going to expropriate in the same way as with Repsol.”
Spain is furious and has threatened Argentina with economic and diplomatic “consequences”.
The United States called the move a “negative development” that could hurt investment in Argentina.
Argentina’s full Senate will vote on the expropriation bill next week.