by Paul David Collins ©, April 2nd, 2008

Bout - Oil - ArmsIt’s a move that is causing fear among the left in Mexico. Mexican president Felipe Calderon intends to present an energy reform bill to the Mexican congress that would allow private investment in Pemex, Mexico’s state-owned oil monopoly (Grillo, no pagination). Calderon claims foreign oil companies can save Pemex from underinvestment and mismanagement by increasing Mexico’s technological and operational capacity, thus allowing the nation to tap its deep-water reserves. According to Calderon, if foreigners are not brought in, Mexico will not be able to tap its deep-water reserves and the nation will be importing petroleum in nine years. Critics of Calderon’s plan include 2006 presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and Rep. Alejandro Sanchez of the leftist Democratic Revolution Party. Obrador and Sanchez fear foreign investment will lead to a predatory form of privatization and Mexicans will lose control of their own oil industry. But the dangers related to foreign incursions into Mexico’s oil industry go deeper than the debate between proponents of nationalization and privatization. The oil industry and the intelligence community have always gone hand in hand. Pemex is certainly no exception.

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