November 17, 2014
The elder statesman of Mexico’s main leftist party said on Sunday the group was on the verge of falling apart after a series of mistakes and the disappearance of 43 students in a state it runs in the southwest of the country.Three-times presidential candidate Cuauhtemoc Cardenas said the opposition Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), which finished runner-up in Mexico’s last two presidential elections, had lost its moral authority and needed urgent reform.In an open letter published by his office, Cardenas, 80, said the PRD was “on the verge of dissolving, or ending up as a simple political-electoral franchise subordinate to interests alien to those of the broad base of its members.”Cardenas, the son of former president Lazaro Cardenas, a leftist icon who nationalized Mexico’s oil industry in 1938, called on the party leadership to step down to allow a process of reconstruction to begin.
November 13, 2014
Saudi Arabia’s oil minister dismissed talk of a price war as having “no basis in reality” in his first public comments since crude plunged into a bear market last month. “Saudi oil policy has remained constant for the past few decades and it has not changed today,” Ali al-Naimi said at a conference in Acapulco, Mexico, yesterday. “We want stable oil markets and steady prices, because this is good for producers, consumers and investors.” Brent crude futures plunged below $80 yesterday for the first time since September 2010 on concern OPEC is in no hurry to halt a four-month slide in prices. Saudi discounts offered to Asian customers in October triggered speculation that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ largest member had changed policy and was seeking to preserve market share, instead of supporting prices by curbing supply. OPEC ministers will meet Nov. 27 in Vienna.
November 12, 2014
11/12/14 Financial Times
Halliburton, the US oilfield services group, reported a tough year in Latin America in its latest quarterly earnings call. Profit margins and activity levels were weaker than expected, largely as a result of operational issues in Mexico. But it is not all looking so downbeat. “We’re . . . excited about the pace of Mexico energy reform and expect to see strong opportunities in shale, mature fields, and deepwater markets in the coming years,” says Dave Lesar, chief executive.
November 5, 2014
11/04/14 Wall Street Journal
More than a century ago, an enterprising Californian struck oil near this Gulf of Mexico port city, the first of many finds that tagged this area as “the Golden Belt” and propelled Mexico into the top ranks of oil producers. Now the cradle of Mexico’s oil industry is set to kick-start a new energy boom, after President Enrique Peña Nieto ’s government invited private companies to explore for and extract oil, ending more than seven decades of government monopoly. While the biggest boost to Mexico’s oil output is likely to come from deep-water fields in the Gulf of Mexico, those fields could take up to a decade to start pumping. Long before then, production is widely seen coming from aging oil onshore fields in this region, which once attracted the famous Standard Oil Co. monopoly.
October 30, 2014
Petroleos Mexicanos signaled a return to profitability by the end of next year as the opening up of Mexico’s oil industry to private capital lifts the state-owned company’s production and reduces its tax burden. A 21 percent slump in the price of crude this year won’t damp Pemex’s plans to bring in partners for 10 of its existing blocks and bid for new areas on offer next year, Chief Executive Officer Emilio Lozoya said in an interview today. Facing eight straight quarters of losses, deteriorating output and a lack of resources to develop new finds, the former World Economic Forum executive is in talks with major producers as Mexico accelerates the industry overhaul that also includes lowering tax rates for Pemex. Speaking on Bloomberg Television’s “The Pulse,” he said crude will recover as demand picks up and deposits become harder to find and develop.
October 27, 2014
Accelerating non-OPEC production growth outside North America, including from Brazil, Mexico and Azerbaijan, will outpace demand growth, leaving the oil market oversupplied, according to the report. The increased output is forcing producers to reduce prices to lure buyers. State-owned Saudi Arabian Oil Co. on Oct. 1 cut prices for all grades and to all regions for November. The Asian price of Arab Light was cut by $1 a barrel to a discount of $1.05 to the average of Oman and Dubai crudes, the benchmark published by Platts, the energy-information division of McGraw-Hill Cos. That’s the lowest since December 2008.
October 16, 2014
Lower oil prices may lead to less of a bonanza for Mexico as it ends a 76-year-old state oil monopoly and opens up to private investment, according to Marco Oviedo, chief economist in the Latin American country for Barclays Plc. The nation is set to hold its first round of auctions next year for oil production contracts that’s forecast to attract nearly $13 billion of investment a year through 2018, according to the Energy Ministry. It will also offer joint ventures with state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos. “Mexico is going to have a very, very important round-one bidding process in just a few months,” Marcelo Mereles, a former Pemex executive who’s now a partner at EnergeA, an energy consultant, said in a phone interview from Mexico City. “ The lowered oil prices could cause bidders to be less aggressive and or shy away from investing in Mexico immediately.”