January 26, 2008 / 5:08 PM / 10 years ago

Mexico's Cantarell Dec oil output hits 2007 low

MEXICO CITY, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Crude oil output from Mexico’s huge but aging Cantarell offshore field fell to 1.260 million barrels per day in December, the energy ministry reported on Saturday.

It was the field’s lowest monthly output level last year and a 16 percent drop from December 2006’s 1.493 million bpd.

The fall in output meant Cantarell, the jewel of Mexico’s oil industry since the late 1970s but now in decline, accounted for just 43 percent of Mexico’s oil production in December. For years it had accounted for 60 percent of output.

State oil company Pemex pumped 1.277 million bpd from Cantarell in November.

A major supplier of crude oil to the United States, Pemex is trying to make up for Cantarell’s decline with higher output at fields such as the offshore Ku Maloob Zaap complex and the onshore Chicontepec field.

Pemex announced on Monday that its overall crude production in December rose to 2.954 million bpd from 2.901 million bpd in November. (Reporting by Chris Aspin; editing by Mohammad Zargham)

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