I usually consider myself to be knowledgeable about geography and geopolitics, especially as they relate to oil and gas production. But I'm somewhat ashamed to admit that, until recently, if you'd asked me to identify Myanmar, I'd probably have guessed it to be a fancy brand of oven cookware.
Myanmar is the name for what used to be called Burma. You probably knew that. And you might have realized that, save for occasional, short-lived efforts at democracy, Myanmar has been ruled by its military for nearly five decades. Recent protests led by Buddhist monks over higher fuel prices expanded into even bigger demonstrations calling for democracy in the impoverished country. A resulting brutal crackdown by the military regime resulted in the deaths of 200 protestors, according to the Associated Press, and generated international outrage.
All of this has also led to Total
These events have occurred as Chevron and Italy's Eni
Chevron, embattled on a number of fronts, recently warned about impending softer-than-expected quarterly results. Indeed, in addition to those mentioned above, I'd say the jury's still out on the company's new venture in China. As such, and although Myanmar admittedly is small potatoes in Chevron's overall scheme of things, there's just too much noise springing up around the company. I'm inclined to take a pass on shares until both its operating economics and its geopolitical squabbles become more settled.
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