Round Zero bolsters Pemex portfolio

August 15, 2014

Mexico’s Ministry of Energy (SENER) granted Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) almost all of the acreage detailed in its Round Zero wish list, including rights to all requested domestic proven and probable reserves (2P).

The government fast-tracked its announcement up from mid-September after Mexican President Enrique Peña  Nieto signed the country’s historic energy reforms into effect on 12 August, opening Mexico’s energy and electricity industries up to private investors for the first time in decades.

SENER granted the state-owned company 83% of Mexico’s 2P reserves, which represents the whole of what it requested on 21 March.  Pemex was assigned 21% of the country’s prospective resources, versus the 31% requested. It requested and received all of its producing areas, totaling 120 entitlements.

Law firm Mayer Brown noted in a 14 August legal update and analysis of the new hydrocarbon legal regime that “the Hydrocarbons Law provides that entitlements shall be granted on an ‘exceptional’ basis, which would seem to permit the granting of area entitlements to Pemex even after the Round Zero process.” With SENER’s consent, the entitlements are assignable or transferable only to another wholly-owned state enterprises, and Pemex may only enter service contracts with private parties.

Mexico's Energy Secretary Pedro Joaquin Coldwell said the area that Pemex has been assigned covers 90,000sq km and contains an estimated 20.6billion boe, Reuters reported.

Pemex revealed that it has identified partnership opportunities in 10 areas, including two in deepwater areas such as Perdido.  

Mexico’s newly-fortified regulator, the National Hydrocarbons Commission (CNH), will conduct its first-ever bid round, Round One, in 2015. Reuters reported that the CNH expects to begin awarding contracts as early as May.

Read more on Mexico's energy reform:

Energy reform heads to Mexican president

Sinopacific enters Mexican market

Mexico's energy reform marches on

PEMEX to invest billions in Cantarell

Mexico's energy reform: challenges and opportunities

High hopes for growth

Mexican Congress passes energy bill

Mexico energy reform seeks to make history by repeating it



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