San Francisco: Pemex became the latest company to withdraw from the imminent first-ever open bidding for Mexican offshore oil rights, the firm announced on Thursday.
As Mexico’s national oil company, Pemex had hitherto held a monopoly position regarding such rights. Thus its withdrawal from this process came as a surprise although it has been struggling with declining production and the bad publicity from a number of industrial accidents.
The announcement came three days after four overseas-linked firms withdrew from the auction, which will mark the first time bidding has been open to overseas firms.
Scheduled for next Wednesday (July 15), the auction of 14 shallow water oil exploration blocks is now down to a field of 17 companies (including ExxonMobil and Chevron) and seven groups.
However, Pemex is not ruling itself out of rejoining the fray for future rounds of bidding.
This is just the initial phase of so-called Round One tenders and Round One will involve 169 oil blocks (including onshore) in all so Pemex will have plenty of opportunity to get back in the game.
The winning bids this time will get 25-year production-sharing contracts.