Business: Seeking to Be Masters

The underdeveloped nations that produce many of the world's vital raw materials learned a lesson from the Arab oil embargo: in cartelization lies the potential for wealth and power. Many nations have talked of creating oil-like cartels to control the prices and supplies of products ranging from bauxite to bananas. Last week they were encouraged by several of the delegates at a United Nations special session called to consider raw-materials problems. But, as might be expected, many of the delegates were more concerned with scoring political points than with addressing the real issues.

The prime example of irrelevant bickering came when Chinese...

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