Emergency Funds for U.S.-Mexico Border Advance in Senate

07/30/14 Bloomberg Businessweek

barbed wireThe U.S. Senate advanced legislation backed by the Obama administration that would provide $2.7 billion in emergency spending to cope with a surge of Central American children at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The measure cleared a procedural hurdle by a 63-33 vote. The House plans to vote tomorrow on a $659 million measure that contains a provision sought by Republicans to speed the return of those children to their native countries. The disagreement between the chambers means Congress probably will leave for its five-week break without agreement on a plan.

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Biden guarantees victory on immigration reform

Washington Times, 11/12/13

Joe BidenRepublican leaders in the House already  have said they won’t take up the immigration reform bill that passed the Senate earlier this year. But that didn’t stop Vice President Joseph  R. Biden from guaranteeing Wednesday that, eventually, the Senate measure — and its controversial pathway to citizenship provision — will become  the law of the land.

“We’re going to pass this Senate bill that we’re  talking about here. It’s going to happen,” Mr.  Biden said during an online question-and-answer session, where he and Cecilia Munoz, the White  House’s director of domestic policy, took questions via Twitter and Skype.

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Mexico Lower House Passes Oil Overhaul to End State Monopoly

energy - oil barrelsBloomberg, 12/12/2013

Mexico’s lower house passed an energy bill that ends Petroleos Mexicanos’s 75-year oil monopoly in a bid to attract foreign investment and boost growth.

Lawmakers approved the bill in general terms in a 354-134 vote late yesterday and continue to discuss minority-party challenges to specific articles. If these are rejected, the initiative will be sent to Mexico’s states, where it’s likely to receive approval from more than half of the legislatures, the threshold for changing the constitution.

The bill, passed by the Senate two days ago, would change Mexico’s charter to permit companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Chevron Corp. (CVX) to drill for oil for the first time since 1938. It would allow production sharing and licenses for outside companies that will also be able to log crude reserves for accounting purposes. Supporters say it will boost economic growth, while opponents say it will funnel the nation’s resource wealth to foreign investors.

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Mexico Reverses History And Allows Private Capital Into Lucrative Oil Industry

pemex2Forbes, 12/11/2013

The Mexican Senate approved the most far-reaching oil reform in 75 years on Tuesday, opening up Mexico’s $95 billion-a-year oil industry to private capital. In a building ringed by thousands of security forces, the ruling PRI party and the opposition PAN  voted to pass the politically controversial reform, overriding the strong opposition by the leftist PRD party lawmakers who displayed a gigantic banner in the center of the hall reading: “NO TO PEMEX’S PRIVATIZATION.” Pemex is Mexico’s state-own oil monopoly.

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Mexican Oil And Gas: Christmas Arrives Early

energy -drilling_platform_in_seaForbes, 12/12/2013

On the morning of December 12th, Mexico woke up to the sound of fireworks as the country celebrated the festival of the Virgin of Guadalupe. A national holiday, the 12th marks the beginning of the Christmas festivities in Mexico, which will end on the 6th of January with the Dia de los Reyes (Three kings day or Epiphany).

But for many in the energy industry, the fireworks and celebrations had a double meaning. The day before, the Mexican Senate and Chamber of Deputies approved a legislative initiative that reforms the country’s energy sector. As expected, the law includes measures to open the oil and gas industry to private and foreign investment, through cash, profit-sharing and production contracts. What is new, however, and is the result of the hard political bargaining that has taken place between the governing PRI and the PAN in recent weeks, is the legal entity of the “license”.

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Mexican Senate OKs bill to open oil industry to foreign investors

Photo by Flickr user Angelica RiveraThe Los Angeles Times, 12/11/2013

Mexico has taken a giant step toward the most radical opening of the country’s nationalized oil and gas industry in 75 years, a move analysts say could boost lagging petroleum production here and further cement North America’s new reputation as an energy-producing powerhouse.

Passage of a bill in the Mexican Senate was hailed this week by oil industry analysts and goes much further in the effort to attract outside investment to Mexico than a proposal originally introduced in August by President Enrique Peña Nieto’s centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI. Peña Nieto praised the more vigorous measure Wednesday.

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Lower house in Mexico approves oil reform measure

Oil barrelsThe Los Angeles Times, 12/12/2013

The lower chamber of Mexico’s Congress followed the lead of the Senate on Wednesday night by approving an energy reform bill that would open the country’s nationalized oil and gas industry to foreign investment.

The bill, which proponents say will help Mexico reverse its declining oil production with the help of foreign capital and expertise, passed on a 354-134 vote, clearing the two-thirds vote hurdle necessary for passage. The Senate approved the bill late Tuesday.

As a change to the Mexican constitution, the proposal also must be approved by a majority of state legislatures. They are expected to do so, though opposition to the measure in some quarters remains fierce.

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