21 August 2013, News Wires – Mexican state-owned oil monopoly Pemex is looking to potentially expand its exploration activities into the US, with eyes on the booming shale sector and deep-water fields in the Gulf of Mexico, according to a report.
Pemex is planning to set up a new company to explore and produce shale gas and deep-water oil within the borders of its North American neighbour, its rookie chief executive told the Wall Street Journal in an interview.
The move is part of an ambitious plan by 38-year-old chief executive Emilio Lozoya to stem years of falling production, and will represent the first step in Pemex’s push to becoming an international oil company.
“Pemex will be starting a new company that will work on the shale-gas and shale-oil fields in the US and in the deep-water side of the US,” Lozoya told the newspaper. “The geology is similar and we can benefit from numerous areas of collaboration with international oil companies.”
The revelation comes as Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto moves to overhaul the Latin American country’s energy industry by allowing private companies to share in oil profits for the first time in seven decades in a bid to stimulate lagging domestic production.
Pemex has explored solely within its domestic borders as it has become the world’s fifth largest crude producer. It has little experience with the complicated drilling and completions required in shale and deep-water fields.
Most of Mexico’s deep-water prospects remain untapped, and the US estimates the country could hold the world’s fourth largest shale resources. Mexico’s oil production has dropped from a high of 3.4 million barrels per day to 2.5 million bpd in the past 10 years.
Lozoya told the Journal that the new company should be created by the end of the year.