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Chirac, Morales Meet in Paris


French President Jacques Chirac has expressed support for plans by Bolivia's President-elect Evo Morales to improve conditions for his country's people, but Mr. Chirac also has urged him to preserve French interests there.

Mr. Chirac made the comments Saturday as the Bolivian president-elect wound up a two-day visit to France.

Mr. Morales stressed his determination to improve life for the Bolivian people. He has announced his intention to revise treaties with foreign energy firms, including the French company, Total, but has acknowledged the need for foreign investment in Bolivia.

Mr. Morales was elected Bolivia's first indigenous leader last month, and has been on a tour to reassure foreign investors who are wary of his plans to nationalize Bolivia's oil and gas industries. On Friday he said Neo-liberalism is not the answer for Bolivia - Latin America's poorest country.

Mr. Morales will continue his tour with visits to China, South Africa and Brazil.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.

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