MEXICO CITY, July 18 (Reuters) - Mexican oil auctions originally set for later this year will be postponed until February 14, the country's oil regulator on Wednesday, allowing time for leftist President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to take office.
While on campaign, Lopez Obrador said he would request a pause in auctions to allow his team to check for corruption in contracts already issued. The national hydrocarbons commission said the decision was taken to allow companies more time to study the areas on offer.
A total of 45 onshore areas, including both conventional and shale blocks, were originally scheduled to be auctioned on September 27, while tenders to pick partners for state-owned oil company Pemex in seven separate areas had been set to be awarded on October 31.
The projects would have been the last scheduled oil tenders of outgoing President Enrique Pena Nieto, who leaves office at the end of November. Lopez Obrador takes office on Dec. 1. (Reporting by Adriana Barrera; Writing by David Alire Garcia; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel)