Mexico to Seek Talks with Obama Admin on Border Oil Fields

MEXICO CITY (Dow Jones Newswires), Jan. 14, 2009

Mexico expects to hold talks with the incoming Obama administration concerning the "fair" development of oil fields that sit on both sides of the maritime border, Energy Minister Georgina Kessel said Wednesday.

"We expect that, as soon as officials from the new administration are in office, these conversations will advance," Kessel told lawmakers at a hearing.

She said Mexico has presented a formal proposal to negotiate "efficient and fair development of these types of reservoirs."

State-run Petroleos Mexicanos thinks at least two deepwater oil fields stretch from the U.S. into Mexico.

One is the Trident field where Chevron Corp. has a development lease; the other is Hammerhead, where Stone Energy Corp. has a lease. Neither field is currently producing oil.

If production starts in the U.S. first, oil could move from Mexico into wells on the U.S. side, a process known as drainage.

Pemex does not currently have the technology to drill in waters as deep as where Trident and Hammerhead are located, and does not expect to get a platform capable of drilling in 10,000 feet of water until late 2010.  

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