By Adriana Barrera
MEXICO CITY, Dec 21 (Reuters) - Mexico’s oil regulator said on Thursday it had assigned trader Trafigura a three-year contract to commercialize crude oil the government obtains from the new scheme of contracts derived from an energy reform.
Until now, PMI, the commercial arm of Mexican state oil firm Pemex, has been the only company that commercializes the government’s hydrocarbons.
But the 2014 energy reform mandated that, starting next year, companies should compete to commercialize the oil and gas that the state obtains under new production-sharing contracts.
It was not immediately clear how much petroleum comes under the deal, but only a few thousand barrels per day are currently being produced under the contracts.
Swiss-based Trafigura will commercialize petroleum and the state-run Federal Commission of Electricity will commercialize gas, the National Hydrocarbons Commission said in a statement seen by Reuters.
Trafigura offered to do the work for 18 cents per barrel, compared with 21 cents per barrel for PMI, the regulator said in a statement.
The regulator said it assigned the contract to Trafigura directly because the Swiss firm and PMI were the only firms that participated in the previous tender.
The regulator estimates that 8.017 million barrels of crude from the state will be commercialized next year, along with 4.068 billion cubic feet of gas. (Reporting by Adriana Barrera; writing by Julia Love; Editing by Leslie Adler)