Aug 20, 2013

Leftist leader wants to repair, not privatize Mexico's oil industry

Los Angeles Times 
By Tracy Wilkinson
August 19, 2013

Mexico’s most prestigious leftist leader on Monday challenged President Enrique Peña Nieto’s proposal to open the national oil industry to private investment, setting the stage for what is sure to be a pitched political battle.

Cuauhtemoc Cardenas said the state oil monopoly, Pemex, is in dire need of repair, but that amending the Constitution, as Peña Nieto plans, is unnecessary and makes Mexico’s resources dangerously vulnerable to outside exploitation.

Instead, Cardenas offered an eight-point plan that would give Pemex financial and administrative autonomy, relieving it, he said, of the onerous state bureaucracy that cripples its ability to grow and become more efficient [link in Spanish]. The plan would also lower Pemex’s tax burden; currently, the company pays up to 70% of its revenue to the government.  Read more. 

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