CANCUN, Mexico, June 6 Crude oil theft at
Mexico's state oil monopoly, Pemex, amounts to as much as 10,000
barrels per day (bpd) and has been rising by nearly a third
annually, a top official with the company said on Thursday.
"It's between 5,000 and 10,000 barrels per day," Carlos
Morales, head of Pemex's exploration and production arm, said on
the sidelines of an oil conference in the resort city of Cancun.
"The thefts target gasoline, diesel and crude ... they vary
all the time but without a doubt they have a major impact on the
(Pemex) budget. Each year fuel theft in Mexico has increased 30
percent," he added.
Criminals have targeted oil pipelines around the country and
Pemex says that company workers are often complicit.
Mexico is currently producing just over 2.5 million bpd,
well down from a peak of 3.4 million bpd in 2004.
The Mexican government is this year planning to launch a
major reform of Pemex to boost private investment in the
company. Pemex funds about one-third of the federal budget.
(Reporting by David Alire Garcia and Isela Serrano; editing by