MEXICO CITY Nov 29 Mexico hopes to award at
least four of the 10 deep water oil blocks due to be auctioned
next week, plus the farm-out on its Trion field, Energy Minister
Pedro Joaquin Coldwell said on Tuesday.
Some of the world's biggest oil firms, including ExxonMobil
and BP, pre-qualified to bid on the initial deep
water tenders on Dec. 5, which Joaquin Coldwell termed "the
mother of all auctions" in an interview with local radio.
The auction will seek a partner for Mexican state oil
company Pemex to develop the Trion field, as well as award the
10 other deep water blocks, including some around Trion just
south of Mexico's maritime border with the United States.
"If we award four blocks plus the farm-out, we'd be very
satisfied, hopefully it'll be more," Joaquin Coldwell said.
Mexico in 2013-14 ended Pemex's production and exploration
monopoly in a bid to encourage more private investment in the
oil and gas industry, though the decline in crude prices has
undermined interest in the historic energy reform.
If successful, the blocks could generate up to $4 billion
worth of investment each, and as much as $11 billion in the case
of Trion, Joaquin Coldwell said, citing Pemex estimates.
There is widespread concern in Mexico that the election of
Donald Trump as U.S. president could hurt its economy due to his
campaign threats to impose punitive tariffs on Mexican-made
goods or tear up a joint trade deal if he cannot renegotiate it.
Still, when asked whether Trump's arrival in the White House
could negatively affect U.S. interest in Mexico's energy sector,
Joaquin Coldwell said he expected cooperation to remain solid.
"In terms of bilateral relations between Mexico and the
United States, we expect it to be as good as it's been with
President (Barack) Obama," the minister said.
(Reporting by Dave Graham and Noe Torres; Editing by Sunil