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Yates Opposed to Oil Leases

Legislation to prevent purchase or lease of American-owned oil lands by the petroleum producing cartel countries or their associates is being prepared by Rep. Sidney Yates (D.III), the Congressman has announced. In a letter to his constituents in Illinois where he is unopposed for re-election to his 13th term in Congress, Yates said he will introduce his legislation when Congress reconvenes in mid-Nov. to block such control by foreign interests. He said that he has expressed his concern to President Ford, urging him to take steps for the same ends.

The “disquieting answer” that he received in questioning U.S. Treasury officials on the subject Yates declared, is that the Arab nations could sit “on our oil leases” and that “there are no barriers to their participation.” Yates said that he considers “appalling, if not dangerous, the prospect that the cartel nations, whose monopolistic price-gouging activities had compelled us to speed up the development of our own energy resources, should be given the opportunity to buy control of our oil lands upon which, to a great extent, our hope for independence is based.”

In his letter. Yates said that his questioning at the Treasury Department followed the Administration’s announcement that it would welcome investment in the United States by Arab nations of their oil income.

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