The State is at the check-out counter when the first sale of hydrocarbon or electric energy takes place. Everyone else is a contractor or supplier. To the extent that competition occurs at all, it is between suppliers or industry groups for contracts, protection or favors.

This situation is changing: Mexico now recognizes it has major energy issues going forward; the future may bring about an evolution toward real energy markets in Mexico, markets in which, as in Canada, there are hundreds of private companies involved in the production of oil and gas and in its processing, refining and transportation to market. The “Mexican North Sea” may become a reality; but this change will not happen overnight.

In the meantime, the operating environment, due diligence by actors and observers requires multiple interpretations of current data, events and trends in order to gain a broad perspective. Because some of these interpretations are mutually exclusive, none may be considered definitive.

The reports of MEXICO ENERGY INTELLIGENCE® (MEI) are intended to enrich the understanding of managers and market and policy analysts by offering fresh and independent insights that are driven by academic-style discipline, scenario analysis and a long-term historical perspective. Reports draw on our in-house databases, field interviews and published data. Our reports are intended to increase the ability of managers, public officials and organizations to make decisions in relation to public tenders, trade, investments, country risks and public policy.

Our experience in Mexico is that of the two dimensions of business, policy and economic development -opportunity and risk-analysts are likely to give more attention to opportunity than to risk. This inclination is found no less in Mexican policymakers than in project managers of Mexican and international companies.

We therefore attach greater importance to the understanding of risk than to the quantification of opportunity. We point to decisions by organizations—whether to act or or to wait—the consequences of which were poorly understood at the time. In Mexico, people, institutions, policies and markets are invisibly connected-hyperlinked, as we think of it. One of our goals, then, is to make this hyperlinked network visible to the reader.

A list of prior reports points to sources of additional information. One of the advantages of a subscription to MEI is the ability to download prior reports (the period of free downloads depends on the subscription period). In many reports, we include as an appendix a list of titles of relevant articles from the Mexican and international press; Spanish titles we generally translate into English.

Finally, we try to follow the injunction taught in schools of journalism: Question authority. In our case, questioning authority means not only statements and motivations, but also data points, estimates and forecasts (of reserve replacement ratios, for example). Occasionally, our questions about data have resulted in changes in the way in which statistical information is made public, Pemex’s natural gas balance, for example. We believe that our reports themselves contribute to the transparency and market reorientation of Mexico’s energy sector.