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Pemex back on track?

After a period of irregularities, Pemex shows positive figures and a promising future, but first, it has to clean its backyard
File Photo/EL UNIVERSAL
04/05/2017
10:16
Mexico City
Newspaper Leader by EL UNIVERSAL
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When the finances of people or companies raise 241% in relation to the previous year – regardless of inheritances, prizes or capital injection- it is a sign that the economic management, in general, is being handled correctly. That percentage was the performance that Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) registered during the first trimester of 2017.

After a long period of losses, the so-called country's most productive enterprise is throwing positive figures for two consecutive trimesters for the first time in almost six years.

What comes next is extremely important. How will that money be employed? What will its destiny be? For years, Pemex was literally squeezed dry since that was what the law stipulated. Now that the regulations have changed and that the oil finances are turning, it's crucial to know how all those resources, that, for the first trimester of 2017, reach almost 88 thousand million pesos, will be channeled.

Little is left from the fortune Pemex generated in the beginning of this century, they were years in which oil barrels were sold in over USD $100 and up to 3 million barrels were produced daily. However, the money that entered the public treasury was spent on current expenditure instead of destining it to exploration, refining or maintenance of the pipeline network.

Besides that cumulus of deficiencies, the state-owned enterprise still has problems to address. To begin with, it's carrying a quite burdensome load of pensions to former workers. EL UNIVERSAL has documented that there's a group of 14 retired Pemex employees who draw pensions between 238 thousand and 362 thousand pesos per month.

Another issue that must be addressed immediately is the shadow of corruption in which the company is immersed due to the cases of bribery by the Brazilian firms, Odebrecht and Braskem. Since the investigations are still ongoing, there's no information available, but the minute there's' a formal resolution, the details of the case will have to be exposed whatever the ending is: Whether the finding of inappropriate management by the functionaries or the dismissal of them.

Pemex fell into a deep hole and it's just now that hope seems to be arising to overcome the situation. This happens exactly now when the oil company has to demonstrate competitivity before new actors that are starting to appear in the energy field. Given these positive numbers for two consecutive trimesters, Pemex must make the use of every peso transparent to the public opinion, create an investment plan and bury the irresponsible age of irregularities and squander for good.

 

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