December 16, 2013
Last week Mexico’s Congress approved a bill to end a seven-decade long state oil monopoly. In coming years foreign companies could invest as much as $20 billion a year in Mexico’s oil sector, thanks to new rules that will allow production sharing.
Although the energy reform bill, spearheaded by Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto during his first year in office, has been vociferously opposed by Mexico’s left, the bill has the backing of Peña’s centrist PRI party as well as the right-of-center party of former President Felipe Calderon. Together the PRI and the PAN had enough votes to push the bill through Congress, where it was approved 353-134.
December 16, 2013
Christian Science Monitor, 12/15/2013
Last week’s approval of reforms for the pivotal oil company Pemex caps a year of major reforms that could transform Mexico – and perhaps change the immigration debate in the US.
If an award could be given in 2013 for Country of the Year, Mexico might deserve it. No other country has done more this past year to put reforms in place to transform a nation – and with startling democratic consensus. The latest reform, approved Thursday by elected lawmakers, will allow foreign and private investment in the oil sector for the first time in more than 70 years. The move upends a notion of Mexican patriotism that stated the national identity rests on government monopoly of the petroleum industry.
December 6, 2013
Financial Times, 12/5/2013
Shortly after Nafta came into effect, Mexico suffered the crushing devaluation of the peso – the Tequila crisis – dashing hopes of imminent prosperity. As for democracy, fewer Mexicans today believe it is the best form of government than in 2000. Will the “Mexican moment” of Mr Peña Nieto’s government prove a similar disappointment?
December 6, 2013
Lawmakers in Mexico are considering a major change to their elections. For more than a century, the country has had the ultimate term limits: nobody can be re-elected.
November 15, 2013
The Globe and Mail, 11/15/2013
Just about everything except the mouths of politicians seems to the paralyzed in the U.S. political system, especially Congress. Getting one big thing done seems next to impossible.
In Canada, the government can get things through the Commons and Senate, courtesy of its majority in both houses. But negotiate with the opposition parties? Are you crazy?
In Mexico, by contrast, something remarkable and controversial is unfolding. In less than a year, President Enrique Pena Nieto and his party are negotiating with both other parties in Congress on an array of reforms that would leave the legislatures of Canada and the United States breathless.
November 6, 2013
Mexico’s two largest parties reached a preliminary accord that would give companies more control in new oil field contracts than the government is proposing, said three people with direct knowledge of the agreement.
The ruling PRI and opposition PAN parties will support a new measure to allow the state to decide the type of contracts to be offered for each project, including service contracts, profit and production sharing and licenses, two of the people said, asking not to be identified as talks are private. Like the concession model proposed by PAN, licenses would grant broader operational control of projects than the govenment’s initial profit-sharing model and allow companies to manage oil directly.
November 5, 2013
Business Insight in Latin America, 11/04/2013
Senators from Mexico’s right-wing PAN party appear to be dropping their support of energy reform being pushed in congress by the ruling PRI party.
PAN party members have reacted strongly to the senate’s passage of fiscal reform, which they claim will punish Mexico’s middle class and businesses.
Many members of the rightist party have now revoked their support for president Enrique Peña Nieto’s energy reform proposal, which has the potential to open the historically insulated oil and gas and electric power sectors.
October 29, 2013
Global Post, 10/28/2013
Leftist leader Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador urged senators from Mexico’s largest opposition parties at a rally over the weekend to form a coalition to vote against the energy and tax reforms proposed by the Peña Nieto administration.
Senators from the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution, or PRD, and the conservative National Action Party, or PAN, should vote “with absolute independence, as true representatives of the people,” against the reforms proposed by President Enrique Peña Nieto, Lopez Obrador said in a address delivered to thousands of his supporters in Mexico City’s Zocalo plaza on Sunday.
October 24, 2013
Mexico’s ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) is ready to support an opposition proposal to increase a planned tax on junk food included in the government’s fiscal reform, the PRI’s leader in the Senate said on Wednesday.
Last week, the lower house of Congress approved President Enrique Pena Nieto’s fiscal reform, at the last minute adding a measure to impose a 5 percent tax on junk food. The Senate must approve the reform by the end of the month.
This week Armando Rios Piter, a Senate finance expert from the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), proposed increasing the tax rate on junk food to 8 percent.
October 23, 2013
Mexico has a “better than ever” chance of passing a bill this year to break a seven-decade state monopoly on oil drilling, said the spokesman for an opposition party needed to gain the reform’s approval.
Talks are advancing in congress to pass electoral changes that the opposition National Action Party, or PAN, says are essential for it to back the energy overhaul, PAN spokesman Juan Molinar Horcasitas said in a phone interview. There’s a “good chance” the PAN and ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party will reach common ground on specifics of the oil bill, Molinar said.