One of Bolivia’s recurring geo-political goals is to gain sovereign rights to a seaport. Ever since the War of the Pacific, where Bolivia lost a province to Chile, access to the sea, and became a land-locked country, Bolivia has dreamed of regaining a strategic seaport to control it’s export supply chain better. This is a sensitive issue in Bolivia. For example, the public upheaval against Lozada, which led to him fleeing the country, stemmed in part because he moved ahead to export Bolivian natural gas through Chilean ports.
Today in Montevideo, Presidents Evo Morales and Tabaré Vázquez of Uruguay met to negotiate a deal where Uruguay would provide Bolivia with access to the Atlantic Ocean in exchange for Bolivian natural gas. This may seem a bit roundabout, and it is, as Bolivia is much close to the Pacific than the Atlantic Ocean, but longstanding animosity towards to Chile, as well as a current maritime border dispute between Peru and Chile in the International Court of Justice, makes sea access in Uruguay much more attractive.