The Mexican Government’s Offshore Entitites in the Oil Sector


This report provides an overview of Pemex’s network of offshore companies, indicating benefits, criticism as well as potential harm to Pemex and the public interest if market governance and oversight are inadequate.

The first section of the body of this report deals with the origin of the network of offshore companies and the legal, commercial and financial logic that lay behind its formation and evolution, which took place over two decades, starting in the late 1980s.

The second section examines the origin and development of PMI Comercio.

A third section points to the benefits that Pemex and the public interest receive from having the PMI Group of Companies, among other offshore affiliates.

A fourth section deals with some of the criticism that PMI and Pemex’s other offshore companies have received, principally from within Mexico.

A fifth section identifies ways that the offshore affiliates can do harm both to Pemex and the public interest if sound governance practices and public oversight are not present.

A sixth section of the body of the discussion concerns how—if at all—Pemex’s affiliates may engage with the Mexican press in a constructive manner.

The report is meant to correct, in some measure, the widely held impression in some quarters in Mexico and abroad that the offshore affiliates of Pemex, which operate outside the laws of Mexico, are somehow illegal and against the public interest.

Media reports in Mexico have focused on PMI, and have typically criticized its structure and operations. In this report we go beyond PMI to include MGI and a few other entities by way of illustration.

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Written by

Mexico Energy Intelligence

Baker & Associates offers niche-market business and policy intelligence related to Mexico's oil and gas, power and chemical industries. Over 1,000 reports have been issued in the last 20 years. Subject matter expert and publisher George Baker, who directs the firm, has carried out consulting assignments starting in the late 1970s at the height of the Oil Boom in Mexico. He brings bilingual and bicultural skill-sets to understanding and responding to challenges of business and public policy, coupled with a deep familiarity with the history and idiosyncrasies of the Mexican operating environment.