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Mexico’s January oil exports lowest since mid-2010

Reuters, 25 February 2012

Mexico's oil exports in January were the lowest since mid-2010 as the state-oil
monopoly diverted more crude to domestic refineries.

State-owned Pemex said Friday the country exported 1.191 million barrels per
day in the first month of 2012, the lowest level in 19 months and a drop from
the 1.282 million bpd shipped in December.

The company sent 1.254 million bpd to refineries in Mexico in January,
compared with 1.164 million in December.

Mexico is a major oil exporter to the United States and the country relies on
oil revenues to fund about a third of the federal budget.

Pemex is planning to build a new refinery in central Mexico to boost its
capacity to process crude and cut down on the more than 40 percent of imported
gasoline it needs to meet local demand.

The country's monthly oil output has changed very little since 2009 after
Pemex slowed the natural rate of decline at its largest, aging fields.

In January, oil production slipped to 2.518 million bpd from 2.557 million
bpd in December, a five-month low.

Mexico's oil production has fallen off since a peak of 3.4 million bpd in
2004, crimping government finances.

Output at Mexico's largest oil complex, Ku Maloob Zaap, fell to 837,000 bpd
in January compared to 842,000 bpd in December, while the second largest field
Cantarell also saw output drop to 402,000 bpd in the first month of 2012, Pemex
said.

At the beginning of the year, Pemex announced a new discovery off the coast
of the eastern state of Veracruz but said it was still evaluating the potential
of the find.

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