Mexican energy minister open to Pemex 'farmouts' in possible shift

FILE PHOTO: Mexico's Energy Minister Rocio Nahle addresses the audience at the Energy Mexico 2019 exposition and congress in Mexico City, Mexico January 29, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican Energy Minister Rocio Nahle said on Monday so called farmouts, or joint ventures, could be done with state oil firm Petroleos Mexicanos if feasible projects are put forward, marking a potential shift from her previous skepticism.

Nahle, one of the staunchest defenders of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s drive for a more statist energy policy, oversaw the suspension of pending farmouts with the company known as Pemex earlier in the two-year-old administration.

However, Pemex remains deeply in debt and Nahle said Pemex would ultimately have to decide whether it wanted to pursue partnerships with other companies to boost its funding.

“And if Pemex needs it and presents an adequate business plan we wouldn’t have a problem,” Nahle told a Senate hearing. “I’m the president of the board of directors, and of course we would approve it for a feasible project.”

Pemex currently has three farmouts dating back to the previous government.

Reporting by Ana Isabel Martinez; Editing by Sandra Maler