No fewer than 60 oil service companies in Venezuela – including Williams, Wood Group and Boots & Coots – were in for a nasty shock when President Hugo Chavez began to expropriate their equipment and installations on Lake Maracaibo, the nation’s oil heartland, last Friday. Venezuela’s socialist leader indicated that takeovers will continue this week in the east of the country. Although larger companies like Schlumberger and Halliburton have so far not been affected, with the government leaving rigs alone, they are keeping their heads down.
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