Pemex to Sell Up to $3B in Local Debt This Year

MEXICO CITY (Dow Jones Newswires), Mar. 3, 2009

Mexican state oil company Petroleos Mexicanos is looking to place $2 billion to $3 billion of debt in the local market as part of a financing program that could reach $10.5 billion, said the company Tuesday.

Pemex's total borrowing for this year, including a recent $2 billion bond issue, will range from $7.5 billion to $10.5 billion.

Pemex could sell another $1 billion in foreign debt, and borrow $2 billion to $2.5 billion from banks. The company also looks to get $1.5 billion to $2 billion from export credit agencies.

During a conference call Pemex CFO Estaban Levin said Pemex's total debt load will increase only $2.5 billion to $3 billion this year, taking into account the amount of debt maturing in 2009.

The company is seeking authorization from the National Banking and Securities Commission to sell up to 70 billion pesos ($4.6 billion) of debt over a five year period, according to a filing published on the Mexican Stock Exchange's Web site.

As of end 2008 Pemex's total debt, including bonds and bank loans, fell to $43.2 billion from $46.1 billion at end 2007.

Pemex plans to invest $19.4 billion this year in exploration, production and refinery expansions.

In January, Mexican oil production fell below 2.7 million barrels a day for the first time since 1995 as output at mature oil fields heads into steep decline.

Pemex plans to invest heavily in new oil projects to get production back to 3 million barrels a day by 2015.  

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