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Mexico's Lopez Obrador says oil auctions will continue


Arturo monroy/notimex

Andrés López Obrador is due to take office as Mexico's president on Dec. 1.

- “We are already preparing tenders for the drilling of wells”

- AMLO to meet with oil company representatives on Saturday

By Amy Stillman and Eric Martin

MEXICO CITY
Petroleumworld 09 07 2018

Mexico's next president said he will continue with oil auctions in the first signs that he is backtracking on plans to scale back the country's historic 2014 energy reforms.

“We are preparing the rescue plan for the oil industry that will consist of producing more crude oil soon, and we will need these companies that have experience, most of them national companies,” President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador told reporters on Thursday in Mexico City. “We are already preparing tenders for the drilling of wells, and we are getting ready because we are going to launch those tenders from the first days of December.”

Lopez Obrador said he will travel to his home state of Tabasco on Saturday to meet with representatives from oil companies. The meeting will take place with his pick for energy minister Rocio Nahle and the next chief executive officer of Pemex, Octavio Romero, according to a spokesman for Lopez Obrador who asked not to be identified, citing internal policy.

Lopez Obrador didn't provide the dates for bid rounds, leaving it unclear whether auctions will immediately be held in December or whether the process of auctioning will restart then. Mexico's National Hydrocarbons Commission plans to hold auctions for more than 40 blocks and Pemex farm-out deals on February 14.

The leftist leader had previously indicated that future oil auctions, which have lured some of the world's biggest oil companies, could be suspended or canceled as his government seeks to strengthen Pemex and focus on expanding refining capacity. He has also said that more than 100 oil contracts already awarded to companies such as Royal Dutch Shell Plc , Exxon Mobil Corp and BP Plc are being reviewed.

Pemex's crude oil output has declined every year since 2004, which Amlo has pledged to turn around with an additional 75 billion pesos ($3.9 billion) for exploration and production investment.

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Story by Amy Stillman and Eric Martin from Bloomberg News.

bloomberg.com 09 06 2018

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