NYTimes – Not only did Mexico’s 2013 energy reform end Pemex’s monopoly on exploration and production, it also ended its monopoly on information. Data on oil locations being released.
Sentido Comun – ASELEC Electric won the CFE competition to supply electricity to the state of Sonora. With the contract, the company, based in Hermosillo, will build an electrical substation and install transmission lines and other equipment.
EFE – The price of a barrel of OPEC oil rose sharply on Wednesday to $48.24 in trading, up 4.5 percent from the previous day and the highest price since Aug. 3.
By Elisabeth Malkin / New York Times
As the price of oil was plummeting in July, the Mexican government auctioned off leases to explore blocks in the Gulf of Mexico. With energy companies retrenching, the auction was a failure.
But Mexico’s fortunes changed on Wednesday. In a follow-up auction, the Mexican government put five production blocks up for bid and awarded contracts for three, well above the average for similar auctions in Latin America.
The success of Wednesday’s bidding appeared to put the government’s new oil policy back on track. Mexico has ended more than 75 years of a state monopoly to invite in foreign investment in an attempt to end a decade-long decline in oil production.
Investors were attracted by relaxed rules and by the characteristics of the blocks, which hold probable oil and gas reserves, analysts said.
“I think the message is clear,” said Oscar López Velarde, Ernst and Young’s oil and gas tax leader in Mexico, who advised some of the bidding companies. “As soon as you see a good selection of blocks, you will see people coming into the country.”
Bloomberg – The U.S. became a net oil exporter to Mexico for the first time in more than 20 years as output from shale fields pushed the world’s biggest consumer toward energy independence.
WSJ – Today (Wednesday) Mexico will auction off nine fields in the shallow-water Gulf of Mexico in what analysts consider its best chance this year to attract private and foreign oil companies, which have been kept out for almost eight decades.
Reuters – Crude production from Mexico’s state-owned oil company Pemex dipped slightly in August,. Crude oil production last month averaged 2.255 million barrels per day (bpd), down 0.7 percent from July.
Reuters – Mexico is studying the possibility of adding two new reactors to the country’s only nuclear power plant and could decide next year whether to seek permits to build them.
Bloomberg – Mexico’s first-ever energy auction will award contracts priced in U.S. dollars in an effort to make the country’s newly opened power industry more attractive to developers.
Offshore Engineer -Mexico released the minimum fiscal terms that must be met by companies to win development rights in the second phase of Round One, scheduled for the end of September.
Bloomberg – Mitsui & Co. and Iberdrola are among the foreign companies interested in trading power in Mexico as the country prepares to open its wholesale market to private producers.
El Economista – The price of Mexican crude oil fell 1.97 percent compared to previous quote and settled at $40.30 a barrel, according to data from Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex).
Green Tech Media – Despite Mexico opening up its electric-power sector to private players, unclear rules are holding back installers and investors from tapping much of the country’s solar power potential.
By Laurence Iliff / Wall Street Journal
Mexico’s hydrocarbons regulator has improved the terms for its September oil auction to drum up more interest among cash-strapped international oil firms reeling from falling prices, with industry analysts applauding the move Wednesday as a step in the right direction.
The National Hydrocarbons Commission approved a series of changes in both auction procedures and contract terms that reduce the risk to oil companies seeking to begin operations in Mexico following the nation’s energy opening to private and foreign firms.
The first oil block auction under the energy overhaul, held in July, was considered a failure because only two of 14 exploratory offshore blocks were awarded. Mexican officials promised to find ways to improve the terms for the second auction, which are for five groups of already discovered offshore fields.
Among the 14 companies that have qualified to bid in the next auction are major oil companies like Chevron Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell, national oil firms such as China’s Cnooc Limited, and Mexican upstarts Sierra Oil & Gas and Carso Oil & Gas.
Bloomberg – When oil collapsed to a six-year low this month, weak demand from China and extra barrels from Iran and Saudi Arabia were marked as the prime suspects. Another country, less central to global energy markets, had a big part to play: Mexico.
El Economista – Mexican crude oil fell 6.98 percent on Monday to $33.71 a barrel, its lowest level since Feb. 18, 2009. The decline on Monday was the eighth round of losses.
Notimex.- A barrel of Brent North Sea for delivery in October traded at $44.23 at the beginning of the session Monday, losing 84 cents (1.86 percent) compared to its previous close of $45.07 a barrel. Meanwhile, US crude West Texas Intermediate fell $1.15 dollars (2.84 percent) and was quoted at $39.30 per barrel.
Desmog – Records obtained by DeSmog shed further light on the role the U.S. government has played to help implement the privatization of Mexico’s oil and gas industry. They reveal the U.S. government acting as a mediator between Mexico’s government and U.S. oil and gas companies seeking to cash in on a policy made possible by the behind-the-scenes efforts of then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s U.S. State Department.
Sentido Comun – Mexican and U.S. officials started operations of the first wind farm to supply electricity to both sides of the border. The farm at the Rumorosa in Baja California cost $300 million.
El Finaciero – The signing of contracts with the winners of the first bidding in Round One will be extended to Sept. 4 rather than Aug.21 due to an excessive workload on the Commission Nacional de Hidrocarburos (CNH) and compliance with certain formalities.