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Pemex CEO Invites World to Tap Mexico’s Energy Shale Reserves

The chief executive officer of Mexico’s state-run oil company Petroleos Mexicanos invited the world to explore for shale deposits in its recently opened energy sector.

“Mexico holds about the sixth largest shale gas reserves in the world,” Emilio Lozoya said in a speech yesterday at the CERA energy conference in Houston. “You’re more than welcome to come and join the exploration opportunity,” he told a crowd of representatives from the world’s largest energy companies, such as Chevron Corp. and Exxon Mobil Corp.

The crude production monopoly held since 1938 by Pemex, as the state-run company is known, ended on Dec. 20. Pemex aims to attract as much as $1 trillion in energy investment during the next decade to exploit the biggest proven oil reserves in Latin America after Venezuela and Brazil, he said.

“Capital from all over the world is welcome in Mexico,” Lozoya said. “We hope to have hundreds of companies operating in any type of rock formation, be it shale, or shallow water, or mature fields, or deep water projects.”

Mexico will submit the names of the oil fields it would like to keep for production purposes to congress this month. The fields not submitted will be auctioned for foreign ownership or joint ventures with Pemex, he said.

Pemex’s daily crude production of 2.52 million barrels a day in the fourth quarter slid 1.5 percent from the same period a year ago. Output at Pemex, the third-largest crude exporter to the U.S., has fallen nine consecutive years from 3.3 million in 2004 due to insufficient investment in exploration and production, Lozoya said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Adam Williams in Mexico City at awilliams111@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net

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