IMF: Pemex's debt with suppliers almost triples;  press public finances

IMF: Pemex’s debt with suppliers almost triples; press public finances

Petróleos Mexicanos has not managed to improve its financial situation and remains a pressure factor for the public finances of the federal government, despite the significant fiscal support it has received, which is equivalent to three points of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), he warned the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

To illustrate the deterioration of the financial management of the oil company, IMF experts explained that since 2019 Pemex’s financial debt went from 9,000 million dollars to 15,000 million this year.

They added that the State’s productive company has also tripled the debt it has with suppliers, which went from 5 billion dollars in 2019 to 13 billion dollars, which it has documented to this day.

In the annual review carried out by IMF technicians in Mexico, the third received by the Andrés Manuel López Obrador administration, they highlighted that in addition to these obligations, the company carries pension liabilities that have grown from the 11,000 million dollars that they represented three years ago. years to the 66,000 million they currently have.

They projected that the maturities of Pemex’s foreign debt amount to 4.25 billion dollars for 2022 and a similar amount for 2023.

They estimated that “if the rating cuts on Pemex’s issues continue, the federal government will have to grant greater financial support to the company, which will end up affecting the spread of sovereign issues.”

As the oil company lost access to the market since October last year and was no longer the country’s dominant issuer, the government had to relieve it to facilitate compliance with its financial commitments, the document states.

Corruption scandals

In this sense, the conclusions of the international institution warn that “the corruption scandals that surrounded Petróleos Mexicanos in the past underscore the critical importance of strengthening its governance and procurement processes within the company.”

The IMF experts summarized in five points the recommendations that could make the Mexican oil company an independent and viable entity, based on international experience.

The first is to increase private investment to replace its proven reserves; They then suggested cutting low-yield investments like a new refinery, based on evidence that existing refineries are operating well below capacity. This is the third consecutive time they have suggested postponing the construction of the refinery.

The third piece of this strategy would be to encourage greater participation from the private sector through the use of farmouts and migrations, which would attract experienced operators from more complex fields that can help recover oil and generate higher revenues.

A fourth suggestion is to sell non-essential assets, and the last piece of the plan is to strengthen Pemex’s governance and procurement processes.

Failure to complete a change that encourages the productive development of the State’s productive enterprise will become a risk factor for “the satisfactory economic stability that the administration has achieved.”

Government response

In response to the proposals regarding the perolera, the economic authorities of Mexico commented to the Fund that there will be “important returns for the economy that include the promotion of energy efficiency.”

They emphasized that public investments aimed at the energy sector are being directed towards the poor regions of the country, in a strategy that will promote their development to facilitate the closing of the inequality gaps that prevail in the country.

Burden for taxpayers

According to the experts’ diagnosis, included in the annual review carried out by IMF experts, “Pemex remains an important burden on taxpayers that distracts the investment of public resources from more productive projects for the economy.”

The experts of the Monetary Fund took, for example, the plans undertaken by the Brazilian oil companies, Petrobras and Colombia, Ecopetrol, after the fall in oil prices in 2014, to observe that a greater participation of the private sector in exploration can. significantly improve the financial position of the company.

Consequently, they suggested that financial support from the government for the oil company should be conditioned on changes in its business plan that make it an efficient and productive company.

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