MEXICO CITY, April 1 Top Mexican congressional
officials said on Tuesday that the approval of the
eagerly-awaited fine print of a landmark energy overhaul will
likely be delayed until at least May, meaning Congress would
have to call a special session to debate it.
Passed late last year, the constitutional overhaul ended
state-owned oil company Pemex's 75-year monopoly and
paves the way for billions of dollars worth of new investments
in the country's lumbering energy sector.
The reform stipulated that lawmakers have until April 20 to
approve so-called secondary legislation that fleshes out key
commercial and regulatory details of the reform, but Congress
appears poised to bust the deadline.
"It is very likely that we might be approving the energy
secondary laws during the extraordinary session in May," said a
senior lawmaker with the ruling Institutional Revolutionary
Party, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity
of the talks.
Mexico's Congress is scheduled to end its current session on
April 30, but the lawmaker said a pending electoral reform that
opposition conservatives are insisting come first will not allow
for enough time to consider the energy bill fine print.
Several congressional officials said the energy legislation
will be delayed to at least May.
Once the secondary laws are set, Pemex is widely expected to
ink joint ventures with international oil majors in a bid to
boost crude oil output which has dropped by a quarter since
hitting peak production of 3.4 million barrels per day in 2004.
(Reporting by Alexandra Alper; Editing by Simon Gardner and