Official: Veracruz Abandoned Wells Could Generate US$2.68bn/y

Wells abandoned by Mexico's state oil company Pemex in Veracruz state could generate up to 30bn pesos (US$2.68bn) a year if reopened, newspaper Milenio quoted Veracruz social development and environment deputy secretary Alfonso Arnaiz Vazquez as saying.

The state government has identified 8,000 abandoned wells and a constitutional reform bill in congress, if passed, would allow private sector participation in the process, Arnaiz said.

The wells are in five oil zones, primarily the Paleocanal de Chicontepec zone, he said.

The official estimates an executive project to reopen the wells and a portfolio of interested investors could be ready in a year. Hughes Corporation and Langar International already have expressed interest, Arnaiz said.

Regarding the bill, Arnaiz said that although President Vicente Fox backs the initiative, the current electoral climate means the next congress will probably take up the bill. Presidential elections take place on July 2.

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