Pemex May Boost Output to 2.8 Million Barrels a Day by 2013, Morales Says

Petroleos Mexicanos, the state-owned oil company, may increase output to as much as 2.8 million barrels a day by 2013, said Carlos Morales, the head of the company’s exploration and production unit.

Ku-Maloob-Zaap, Mexico’s largest oil project, will keep producing about 850,000 barrels per day “for the next two or three years,” Morales told reporters today in Mexico City.

Mexico City-based Pemex is trying to extend the life of its Ku-Maloob-Zaap field by maintaining output at the current level instead of accelerating too rapidly, Morales said. About a third of the company’s 2.595-million-barrels of daily production last month came from Ku-Maloob-Zaap wells.

Pemex may need to boost spending by about a third to more than $25 billion a year as it seeks to meet long-term output targets, Mexico’s Energy Minister Georgina Kessel said April 29 in an interview. Chief Executive Officer Juan Jose Suarez Coppel is seeking Pemex’s first production gains in six years as he arrests slumping output at the Cantarell field and spends about $19 billion on projects such as Ku-Maloob-Zaap and Chicontepec.

Morales, 55, said Chicontepec will produce 58,000 barrels a day by the end of 2010, and is expected to increase its output to 80,000 barrels at the end of 2011. Chicontepec is an onshore field that missed production targets last year.

Ku-Maloob-Zaap’s output climbed 11 percent to 809,015 barrels a day in March from the same period a year earlier, the energy ministry said on April 23.

Crude output for Mexico, and its aging Cantarell field, peaked in December 2003 at about 3.5 million barrels a day, according to Energy Ministry data.

To contact the reporter on this story: Carlos Manuel Rodriguez in Mexico City at carlosmr@bloomberg.net; Jose Enrique Arrioja at jarrioja@bloomberg.net

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