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Pemex Sees Production Ventures as Early as Year-End, CEO Says

Pemex Offshore Oil Platform
Petroleos Mexicanos signage is displayed on the company's La Muralla IV deep sea crude oil platform in the waters off Veracruz, Mexico. Photographer: Susana Gonzalez/Bloomberg

Petroleos Mexicanos, Mexico’s state-owned oil company, expects to sign its first exploration and production agreements with international companies as early as year-end after Mexico ended its 75-year monopoly.

Pemex, as the state oil company is known, will initially focus on mature and deep-water fields to establish the ventures, Chief Executive Officer Emilio Lozoya said today.

Possible associations in the refining, transportation and petrochemical businesses can be done once congress approves the so-called secondary legislation, which is expected in April, he said.

“We expect that in exploration and production, by the end of 2014 or beginning of 2015 we achieve the first investments or associations,” Lozoya said today in an interview in Davos during the World Economic Forum. “The quickest way to monetize the investments that Pemex already did in exploration is through joint ventures. This means increasing output and oil income.”

President Enrique Pena Nieto ended the seven-decade-plus production monopoly held by Pemex, allowing foreign companies to produce crude in the largest supplier to the U.S. after Canada and Saudi Arabia.

The overhaul may bring an additional $20 billion in foreign direct investment as soon as 2015, according to Bank of America Corp.

Pemex expects to start new wells in the next few months, helping the company boost its oil output to 2.6 million barrels a day, Lozoya also said today. Output is presently 2.503 million barrels a day, according to preliminary data from the company.

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