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Chavez Decrees Takeover of Foreign Oil

President Hugo Chavez ordered by decree on Monday the takeover of oil projects run by foreign oil companies in Venezuela's Orinoco River region.

Chavez had previously announced the government's intention to take a majority stake by May 1 in four heavy oil-upgrading projects run by British Petroleum (nyse: BP - news - people ) PLC, Exxon Mobil Corp. (nyse: XOM - news - people ), Chevron (nyse: CVX - news - people ) Corp., ConocoPhillips (nyse: COP - news - people ) Co., Total SA and Statoil ASA (nyse: STO - news - people ).

He said Monday that has decreed a law to proceed with the nationalizations that will see state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA, or PDVSA, taking at least a 60 percent stake in the projects.

"The privatization of oil in Venezuela has come to an end," he said on his weekday radio show, "Hello, President." "This marks the true nationalization of oil in Venezuela."

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