Pemex Hydrocarbons Reserves Fall 0.6% in 2005

Mexico's state-owned oil company Pemex's onshore and offshore proven, probable and possible hydrocarbons reserves were 46.6 billion barrels (Bb) at end-2005, 0.6% down compared to the previous year, newspaper El Universal reported.

Despite Pemex's new exploration investments, its rate of hydrocarbon reserves replacement reached only 57% in 2005, a similar replacement level compared to 2004, the paper quoted Pemex CEO Luis Ramírez Corzo as saying.

This means Pemex is replacing only about half the crude it produces with new deposits, El Universal reported.

Pemex's oil reserves have been falling every year since 1970, when the company reached its highest level of crude reserves at 70Bb, the paper reported.

In addition Pemex's crude production has been rising since 1999, making it impossible to stop the natural decline of existing fields, the paper reported.

As a result Pemex is dropping in world rankings of countries with crude reserves and could be replaced by Algeria in the 2005 ranking after occupying 14th spot in 2004, according to the Oil & Gas Journal November 2005 edition, the paper reported.

Pemex's plan to boost crude reserves in 2006 includes: projects in the northern Burgos basin; the Amatitlán and Agua Fría fields in the Chicontepec region; Ayín-Alux; and the light crude marine San Manuel and Ixtal-Manik projects in Pemex's strategic gas program, the paper reported.

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