Archive for the ‘Mexico’ Category

Mexico’s Energy Reform: So Far, So Good

| September 2nd, 2014 | No Comments »
Inside Sources

By Roger F. Noriega and Felipe Trigos

The enactment of the “secondary legislation” to implement Mexico’s energy reform is an impressive step forward.  That country’s economic future could be fundamentally transformed, if Mexico’s leaders follow through on a transparent, sustained effort to modernize the oil, gas, and electricity sectors and keep government spending and interference from undermining prosperity.

For the first time in 80 years, Mexico has opened the door to private investment in the energy sector, leaving behind years of anachronistic resource nationalism that has contributed to the decline of the state-owned oil company, Pemex, and the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE).

Insufficient investment in exploration and infrastructure, over-taxation, political interference, union influence, and corruption all have contributed to the decline of Pemex.  From 2001 to 2013, oil production in Mexico fell more than 30 percent. Meanwhile, the CFE has lost almost a billion dollars in 2012 and 2013 for similar ... Read More

Mexico Turns to Army, Drones for Security

| September 2nd, 2014 | No Comments »
ABC News

By MARK STEVENSON Associated Press

The Mexican government says it is increasingly turning to the use of the army and drones in security patrols, reducing the role of the once-successful Marine forces.

In an annual report on the state of the nation submitted to Congress Monday, the administration of President Enrique Pena Nieto said army patrols had increased 52.2 percent between September and July as compared to the same period of the previous year.

The number of marine patrols decreased 28.3 percent in the same period. The marines have carried out some of the biggest take-downs of major drug lords.

The government also gave one of its first detailed accountings of the use of drones, saying it had flown 149 security drone missions with over 581 hours of flying time.

The report said homicides, especially those relating to organized crime, had dropped over the last year. It said Mexico’s homicide rate for all of 2013 ... Read More

Mexico officials pull CentAm migrants from trains

| August 27th, 2014 | No Comments »
Article originally appeared in the Associated Press

BY MARK STEVENSON

U.S.-bound Central Americans are fleeing urban areas and hiking into the woods and low jungle for fear of being detained by Mexican officials rounding up migrants in southern Mexico.

Until recently, the streets of Arriaga bustled with migrants who would stay at cheap flophouses and shelters and hop aboard the northboundfreight trains at will. The streets of the city of about 40,000 people now look empty.

Federal official Humberto Mayans said Tuesday that immigration officials have pulled 6,000 migrants off the trains they call “The Beast” but offered no details on the roundups.

“We won’t allow in any way for them to board the trains,” Mayans told Radio Formula. He was recently appointed to head the federal government’s southern border improvement plans.

Mexico’s Interior Department said in a statement later Tuesday that the migrants were from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador and had been returned to their countries.

Mexican officials say the raids seek ... Read More

La Marina detiene a hijo de El Azul, padrino de El Chapo Guzmán

| August 25th, 2014 | No Comments »
Excelsior

CULIACÁN, 25 de agosto.- Autoridades estatales informaron sobre ladetención de Juan José Esparragoza Jiménez, uno de los supuestos hijos de Juan José Esparragoza Moreno, conocido como El Azul, durante un operativo de la Secretaría Marina Armada de México en Culiacán.

De acuerdo con la información proporcionada, fue el miércoles pasado cuando elementos especiales de las Fuerzas Armadas arribaron a un domicilio ubicado en el fraccionamiento Interlomas de la ciudad capital, donde arrestaron al vástago de uno de los líderes del Cártel del Pacífico.

Juan José, de 25 años, fue detenido junto a una mujer de nombre Lourdes Morales y algunos menores de edad que se encontraban en el mismo domicilio ubicado en el norponiente de Culiacán.

El Azul nació el 3 de febrero de 1949 en Huichiopa, comunidad perteneciente a Badiraguato, mismo municipio de donde es originario el capo Joaquín El Chapo Guzmán ‒de quien era socio y considerado su padrino‒ y la dinastía de los hermanos Beltrán Leyva.

Dentro de su trayectoria criminal, Juan José Esparragoza Moreno, El Azul, se inició ... Read More

Perry Says Terrorists Could Be Entering the U.S. From Mexico

| August 22nd, 2014 | No Comments »
The New York Times

BY EMMARIE HUETTEMAN & DAVID MONTGOMERY

Gov. Rick Perry of Texas warned Thursday that militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and other terrorist groups may have already slipped across the Mexican border.

Mr. Perry said there is “no clear evidence” that terrorists have entered the United States illegally across the southern border. But he argued that illegal immigration should be considered a national security issue as well as a social and economic problem, and as evidence he cited the increase in violent crimes committed by illegal immigrants.

“I think there is the obvious, great concern that — because of the condition of the border from the standpoint of it not being secure and us not knowing who is penetrating across — that individuals from ISIS or other terrorist states could be,” ... Read More

Mexican mayor detained for alleged links to cartel

| August 15th, 2014 | No Comments »
Article originally appeared in the Associated Press

A mayor in the western state of Michoacan was detained for allegedly ordering the killing of a friend and extorting her employees and street vendors in her city on behalf of a drug cartel, authorities said Thursday.

Michoacan state prosecutors said in a statement that Huetamo Mayor Dalia Santana told her friend to meet her for breakfast at a Chinese restaurant, where a gunman shot him to death last year. The gunman was a member of the Knights Templar drug cartel, which is based in Michoacan.

Officials said Santana demanded 20 percent of her employees’ salaries and also extorted street vendors and gave the money to Servando Gomez, the alleged leader of the Knights Templar cartel.

Santana is the fifth official detained in Michoacan this year for alleged links to organized crime. Authorities have also arrested the mayors of Aguililla, Apatzingan and Lazaro Cardenas. In April, federal investigators detained Jesus Reyna, Michoacan’s former ... Read More

Mexico Outlines Plan to Open Oil Fields to Private Companies

| August 14th, 2014 | No Comments »
Wall Street Journal WSJ-01

BY LAURENCE ILFE & JUAN MONTES

Mexico on Wednesday set aside the bulk of its currently active oil fields for Petróleos Mexicanos but said private companies will be allowed to bid on four-fifths of prospective resources as the government ends the national oil firm’s seven-decade monopoly.

Officials hope that the bidding, starting as soon as next year, will spark an energy boom.

Pemex’s chief executive said the new competition will help the company, making it more efficient. “Pemex has been waiting for these changes for decades,” CEO Emilio Lozoya said in an interview at its headquarters here. “We’re committed to making sure that Pemex continues to be not only the largest company in Mexico, but to regain the largest spot in Latin America and be also one of the leaders worldwide.”

Pemex lost the top spot in Latin America a few years ago to Brazil’s Petróleo BrasileiroSA PETR4.BR +1.18% . Revenue for Petrobras was $141 billion last year, ... Read More

Pemex Granted All Probable Reserves Sought in Oil Opening

| August 13th, 2014 | No Comments »
Bloomberg

By Adam Williams

Petroleos Mexicanos, preparing for the end of its 76-year state oil monopoly, was granted rights to all the proved and probable oil reserves it sought for development as Mexico opens its doors to foreign competition.

Pemex, as the state-owned company is known, will maintain 83 percent of the country’s so-called 2p reserves and 21 percent of potential reserves, Energy Minister Pedro Joaquin Coldwell said today in Mexico City. Mexico’s investment in fields will be $50 billion in 2015-2018, he said during a presentation of the non-competitive bidding known as round zero.

The opening of Mexico’s energy industry to private investment is considered to be on a scale with the North American Free Trade Agreement in terms of economic significance, Alberto Ramos, chief Latin America economist at Goldman Sachs, said in an Aug. 7 research note. The energy ministry will now prepare for the first round of open ... Read More

Consuman en 98 días la Reforma Energética

| August 7th, 2014 | No Comments »
Excelsior

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO, 7 de agosto.- Con el voto de los senadores del PRI, PAN y Partido Verde, el pleno del Senado aprobó ayer, sin cambios, el total del paquete de reforma fiscal y hacendaria en materia energética y lo envió al presidente Enrique Peña Nieto para su promulgación y entrada en vigor, a fin de que la riqueza petrolera contribuya al desarrollo del país y sea el Fondo Mexicano del Petróleo, ya no la Secretaría de Hacienda, quien la administre.

Así, después de 201 horas 15 minutos de debate en sus plenos y 98 días, el Congreso de la Unión concluyó el envío de nuevas leyes y reformas de ley al Ejecutivo federal, quien podrá promulgar la nueva etapa de la industria energética nacional a partir de este jueves, a fin de que comience a caminar la construcción de condiciones para la entrada de competidores extranjeros en extracción de petróleo, ... Read More

Mexico Opens Energy Sector to Private Investors

| August 7th, 2014 | No Comments »
Wall Street Journal WSJ-01

BY JUAN MONTES

Mexican lawmakers late Wednesday completed an historic opening of the country’s energy sector to private investors after 76 years of state monopoly, in a move with far-reaching implications for the sector and the country’s economy.

Completion of the overhaul is a political victory for President Enrique Peña Nieto, who made it the cornerstone of a reformist agenda intended to improve Mexico’s competitiveness and stimulate economic growth. The victory seemed unthinkable to many when he took office in December 2012. Over the past quarter century, every Mexican president had tried but failed to secure political support to diminish the state energy monopoly.

The opening of the energy sector is the culmination of a decades-long effort to liberalize the Mexican economy that began in 1982, when then-President Miguel de la Madrid took the first steps toward ending decades of state control. Energy had remained as the one important economic sector still in ... Read More

Menor demanda externa reduce crecimiento de América Latina

| August 5th, 2014 | No Comments »
El Nuevo Herald

AFP

SANTIAGO – La menor demanda externa de materias primas por parte de los socios de América Latina y el Caribe, principalmente China, llevó a Cepal a reducir su estimación del crecimiento de la región de 2.7% a 2.2% en el 2014.

A la menor demanda externa se suma “un bajo dinamismo de la demanda interna, insuficiente inversión y un limitado espacio para la implementación de políticas que impulsen la reactivación”, sostuvo la Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (Cepal) en un informe económico presentado este lunes.

El menor crecimiento de China es “el principal riesgo” en lo que queda de año para los países de la región exportadores de materias primas.

En tanto, el crecimiento de Europa y Japón, otros importantes socios comerciales de Latinoamérica, caerá de 0.5% a 0.2% y de 1.7% a 1.4% respectivamente, lo que también significará una menor demanda de las ... Read More

Dan el sí total a la Reforma Energética; Congreso envía leyes secundarias al ejecutivo

| August 5th, 2014 | No Comments »
Excelsior

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO, 5 de agosto.- Con las leyes aprobadas ayer, el Senado terminó con 76 años del monopolio de Pemex en el sector de hidrocarburos y con 54 años de la dominancia de la CFE en el sector eléctrico.

La legislación secundaria que da sustento jurídico y administrativo a la Reforma Energética, para abrir el sector a la inversión privada nacional e internacional, fue avalada por el Senado, después de 96 días de negociación y del intento del PRD por impedirla.

Esta madrugada, el Senado envió el paquete de leyes energéticas al Ejecutivo para su publicación en el Diario Oficial de la Federación.

México entra así a una etapa que buscará potenciar su riqueza petrolera, de gas y de generación de electricidad.

Pemex y la CFE dejan de ser paraestatales y se convierten en Empresas Productivas del Estado ante la competencia de los nuevos inversionistas que llegarán al país. Ambas empresas serán autónomas y ... Read More

Mexico Passes Fresh Energy Laws, Advancing Sector Reform

| August 4th, 2014 | No Comments »
Wall Street Journal WSJ-01

Mexico’s lower house of Congress has passed a series of laws to help reorder the energy industry, including a controversial plan for the government to take over billions of dollars in pension liabilities at the state-owned energy companies.

Passage of the new laws, which the house wrapped up in the early hours Saturday, moves Mexico closer to completing an energy overhaul passed last year, in which the constitution was amended to allow private companies to explore for and produce oil in Mexico for the first time since the 1938 expropriation of the oil industry.

The overhaul is expected to draw billions of dollars of investment to develop complex reserves, such as those in deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico and in shale gas formations onland in northern Mexico.

State oil company Petróleos Mexicanos is still expected to remain the biggest producer of oil and gas in the country for years, with privately ... Read More

Mexico is weak link to cross-border immigration enforcement

| August 4th, 2014 | No Comments »
From the Washington Post

A few weeks ago, just about the same time that Mexican officials said they were putting a stop once and for all to the rolling horror show nicknamed “The Beast,” Jhonny Torres left Honduras for Houston. He reached southern Mexico and scrambled onto a boxcar with hundreds of other migrants.

Gang members stopped the train near the Mayan ruins of Palenque and took his last $50. In Orizaba, another dreaded shakedown site farther north, gunmen put a pistol to his temple and accused him of being a smuggling guide who hadn’t paid the gang protection money. They let him go, Torres said, only when they figured out it was his first trip and he had nothing left to steal.

By the time Torres reached the tent-camp migrant shelter here on the northern outskirts of Mexico City, he’d been held up five times by armed gangs, including a group of commandos claiming to ... Read More

Deal to stop migrants from boarding La Bestia train

| July 31st, 2014 | No Comments »
BBC

Guatemala, Mexico and the United States have reached a deal to try to prevent migrants from jumping onto a freight train in an attempt to reach the US, according to Guatemalan officials.

Tens of thousands of migrants stow away on the train, known as La Bestia (The Beast), every year.

Hundreds are injured or killed when they fall under its wheels. Many more are robbed or attacked by gangs.

The three countries said they would establish more checkpoints.

Rising flow

Guatemala’s top immigration official, Alejandra Gordillo, said the deal was reached during meetings between Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and US Vice President Joe Biden.

Mr Biden travelled to Central America last month to try to stem a growing flow of unaccompanied minors from the region to the US.

According to US Homeland Security, 52,000 unaccompanied children arrived on the US border with Mexico between October 2013 and ... Read More

México: 55 mil 325 asesinatos

| July 29th, 2014 | No Comments »
Excelsior

POR MARTÍN MORENO

La violencia en el país ni disminuye ni se ha controlado: durante 19 meses del gobierno se han registrado 55 mil 325 asesinatos, a un ritmo de dos mil 900 homicidios cada mes. Alrededor de 700 a la semana. Cerca de cien diarios (fuente: Secretariado Ejecutivo del Sistema Nacional de Seguridad Pública).

¿Dónde está el viraje?

Tan sólo en la estrategia discursiva. En el manejo mediático. Bajo un lema: si no hablo de ello, se olvidan del problema. La violencia sigue allí.

Y no son filias ni fobias ni es discurso incendiario de López Obrador.

Son las propias cifras del SESNSP.

¿Y qué dicen esas cifras? ¿Cuáles son los parámetros —y miedos— que hoy tienen los mexicanos en cuanto a la violencia?

Revisemos:

Las cifras oficiales apuntan a que, de diciembre de 2012 a junio de 2014, se ... Read More

Japanese PM opens LatAm tour with Mexico energy deals

| July 28th, 2014 | No Comments »
Yahoo News-01

By Leticia Pineda

Mexico City (AFP) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe struck a series of energy deals with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto at the start of a five-country Latin American tour.

Abe, whose visit to the region comes on the heels of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s, met Pena Nieto at the presidential palace for talks that ended with the signing of a raft of deals.

The new agreements included one between Mexican state oil firm Pemex and Japan’s development bank, and another between Pemex and the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation.

With Japan on the lookout for new power sources after the Fukushima disaster forced the shutdown of its nuclear reactors, energy is high on the prime minister’s agenda for the trip.

Mexico is undergoing sweeping changes in its energy sector, with Congress poised to end struggling Pemex’s 75-year monopoly ... Read More

NORIEGA: La inseguridad de Centro América intensifica la crisis en la frontera sur de Estados Unidos

| July 25th, 2014 | 1 Comment »
Article Appeared in The Washington Times

La oleada de inmigrantes ilegales en la frontera suroeste de los Estados Unidos,  hizo sonar la alarma para el Presidente y el Congreso e impulsar una misión de rescate internacional para enfrentar a criminales, narcotraficantes y pandilleros que amenazan la seguridad de EE.UU., junto con las vidas y sustento de millones de centroamericanos.

El presidente Obama ha solicitado $3.7 mil millones en fondos de emergencia para hacer frente a la afluencia de inmigrantes ilegales a lo largo de la frontera de Estados Unidos con México. A pesar de que la suma es considerable, es evidente que los programas que están siendo ejecutados y planificados por la administración son medidas provisionales. Estas medidas no hacen nada para hacer frente al causante del problema a largo plazo: la creciente criminalidad  y la corrupción en Centroamérica, que en su mayoría son alimentadas por el tráfico ilegal de drogas provocado por la demanda de los ... Read More

Mexico’s Energy and Telecom Reforms Come Into Focus

| July 25th, 2014 | No Comments »
Forbes

The passage of President Enrique Peña Nieto’s reform agenda last year was a watershed moment for Mexico’s government, representing the most significant change to the country’s governance since the election of VicenteFox in 2000 ended decades of single-party rule. Yet the true extent of the reforms remains very much unknown. Although the constitutional amendments passed last year represented agreements to reforms in principle, the nuts and bolts of the actual reform must still be hashed out in a wave of secondary legislation. As I’ve written here before, the devil is in the details.

Some of those details are now coming into focus for two of the most significant areas of reform: telecommunications and energy. The secondary legislation governing telecoms reform was signed into law on July 14, and legislation implementing the energy reforms is not far behind.

Initial reaction to the telecoms laws was mixed. On the one hand, critics charge that the new laws do ... Read More

NORIEGA: Central American insecurity fuels U.S. border crisis

| July 24th, 2014 | No Comments »
Article Appeared in The Washington Times

The surge of illegal immigrants at the U.S. southwest border
should sound the alarm for the President and Congress to lead an
international rescue mission to confront murderous narco-traffickers
and street gangsters who threaten U.S. security along with the lives and
livelihood of millions of Central Americans.

President Obama has requested $3.7 billion in emergency
funding to cope with the influx of illegal immigrants along the
 US-Mexico border. Notwithstanding that considerable sum, it is clear
that the programs currently being implemented and planned by the
administration are primarily stopgap measures. They do nothing to
address the long-term driver of the problem: the escalating
criminality and corruption in Central America—most of it fueled by
illegal drug trafficking driven by U.S. demand—that undermines
democratic institutions, rule of law, economic opportunity, and public
safety.

The immediate task is to staunch the current explosion of
illegal crossings, including thousands of unaccompanied minors.
Although the uptick in violence in their homelands contributes to
economic dislocation and fear, loose talk about a more permissive ... Read More

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