Neoliberalism and De Facto Integration in the Southern Cone: Argentina as an Exporter of Hydrocarbons
Neoliberalismo e integración “de hecho” en el Cono Sur: Argentina como exportadora de hidrocarburos;
Neoliberalismo e integração “de fato” no Cone Sul: a Argentina como exportadora de hidrocarbonetos
Between 1989 and 2001, a process of energy integration took place in the Southern Cone of Latin America, in which Argentina adopted the role of oil and natural gas exporter, although historically it had to import part of its consumption of hydrocarbons and derivatives in order to cover its domestic demand. The purpose of this article is to analyze why and how Argentina became a supplier of hydrocarbons. It is argued that this outcome was less a result of state policy than an indirect consequence of the neoliberal reform of the hydrocarbons sector, the pillars of which were market deregulation, the privatization of the state oil company Yacimientos Petrolíferos Fiscales Sociedad del Estado (ypf), and the symbolic and material transformation of oil and gas in commodities. According to eclac, it was more a de facto rather than a policy-driven integration. Based on previous studies of the reform of the sector, a methodological strategy based on documentary research was applied through the collection, systematization and analysis of secondary data.