Category Archives: Energy

Indian refineries step up oil imports from Mexico

Economic Times – Indian refineries have consistently reduced imports from traditional markets like Saudi Arabia and Iran and have stepped up purchases from other geographies such as Mexico, Iraq and Venezuela while building inventories, as crude prices remain weak due to lower demand.

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/energy/oil-gas/indian-refineries-step-up-oil-imports-from-newer-geographies-like-mexico-iraq/articleshow/46590552.cms

Are gas reserves beneath the deadly turf war in northern Mexico?

Was violence used as a strategy to strip landowners and ranchers of large tracts of land in areas rich in gas, coal and water.
Was violence used as a strategy to strip landowners and ranchers of large tracts of land in areas rich in gas, coal and water.

By Ignacio Alvarado Álvarez / Al Jazeera

Mexico’s northern border area is full of semidesert lands with small cities, towns and ranches dedicated to livestock and forage crops. Under this inhospitable surface lies the world’s fourth-largest reserves of shale gas and 95 percent of Mexico’s coal.

The cycle of great violence began here — as in the nearby states of Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas and Veracruz — in 2009. From 2005 to 2009, there were 788 homicides in the state. In 2010 and 2011, Coahuila reported 1,067 homicides.

The prevailing explanation for the violence is that the ruthless Zetas cartel established control of the area while overwhelmed authorities did little to oppose them. But growing analysis links the violence to a corrupt group of government officials in whose jurisdiction lie millions of pesos in hydrocarbons.

“Energy Reform and Security in Northeastern Mexico,” a report published by the Mexico Center at Rice University, places the regional violence in the context of powerful economic interests. It is not the government’s version, that of a war among cartels for routes to the U.S., nor is it the concept of la plaza, or territorial control by criminal organizations. Rather, the struggle is for control of the more than 70,000 square miles of the Burgos Basin and its enormous gas reserves.

“[In Coahuila] we have become aware of a new criminal system that involves organized crime working together in a systemic way with federal, state and municipal authorities and law enforcement,” said Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera, an associate professor and the director of the department of government at the University of Texas at Brownsville.

http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/3/10/gas-and-coal-behind-violence-northern-mexico.html

Mexico modifies terms, scope of oil block auctions, might alter more

Coldwell said recent modifications in financial terms for oil contracts came in consultation with industry groups over several weeks and not because of recent pressure from a few big-oil executives.
Coldwell said recent modifications in financial terms for oil contracts came in consultation with industry groups over several weeks and not because of recent pressure from a few big-oil executives.

By Laurence Iliff / Wall Street Journal

Mexico has modified the terms and scope of this year’s auction of oil blocks to keep them attractive in the current price environment, Energy Minister Pedro Joaquín Coldwell said, and more changes could be in the offing.

“It could be that we make some more adjustments, but it’s not something that I can assure,” Coldwell said at a news conference. For example, the government might adjust the time limit for the drilling of exploratory wells in certain oil contracts, he said.

Currently, Mexico is in the preparation stage to auction off shallow-water blocks for exploration in the Gulf of Mexico, and to take bids for nearby oil fields that already have been discovered and contain certified reserves.

Those are the first two phases of an oil auction this year dubbed “round one” because it is the first of its kind since an energy overhaul opened the sector to private companies last year.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/mexico-may-further-modify-oil-auctions-energy-minister-says-1425950737

Mexico’s energy reform: Do the numbers add up?

For now, Mexico’s goal of 500,000 bpd looks a long way away.
For now, Mexico’s goal of 500,000 bpd looks a long way away.

By Jude Webber / Financial Times

Mexico’s oil liberalisation is now well under way, with the tender of a second lot of oil assets – nine fields grouped into five blocks – now set to join the 14 already announced. But do the country’s projections for future oil recovery add up?

The government is hoping that private investment in a sector closed for nearly 80 years under the monopoly of state oil company Pemex will succeed in turning around a decade of inexorable decline in Mexico’s oil output. Indeed, it has talked of adding 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) by 2018, when the government’s term is up.

Can it? Low oil prices have already forced the government to admit that it will not be able to offer some of the shale fields that had been among the initial line-up of 169 fields to be tendered this year. As a result, as Miguel Messmacher, income undersecretary, told reporters: “Obviously, lower prices will mean lower income for the Mexican state.” How much lower? No one is clear, yet.

http://blogs.ft.com/beyond-brics/2015/03/02/mexicos-energy-reform-do-the-numbers-add-up/