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Economic Nationalism, Political Constituencies, and Multinational Corporations: The Impact of the Mexican Oil Nationalization in Colombia


  • Bucheli, Marcelo

    (U of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)


Between 1917 and 1938, the Mexican government wrote a series of nationalist laws affecting the operations of the foreign multinationals operating there. This nationalism reached its peak in 1938, when the Mexican government expropriated foreign assets in the oil industry. During this period, the Colombian government closely watched the events unfolding in Mexico and copied some of the Mexican nationalist legislation, although in a milder version. This paper argues that the Colombian government was less radical than the Mexican one because the Colombian private sector feared excessive government intervention in the economy. The Mexican government had the working class as its main constituency, while the Colombian government represented the commercial and industrial elites, both sectors who did not want confrontation with the United States or expropriation of private property.

Suggested Citation

  • Bucheli, Marcelo, 2006. "Economic Nationalism, Political Constituencies, and Multinational Corporations: The Impact of the Mexican Oil Nationalization in Colombia," Working Papers 06-0123, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, College of Business.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecl:illbus:06-0123

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