CRE Aims to Expedite Permit Processing
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CRE Aims to Expedite Permit Processing

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Perla Velasco By Perla Velasco | Journalist & Industry Analyst - Tue, 07/25/2023 - 08:00

CRE has suspended its scheduling scheme used during the pandemic. Nonetheless, regulated organizations are still concerned over the resolution of pending procedures.

CRE has published an agreement that invalidates the A/001/2021 scheme, published in January 2021, through which it suspended deadlines and terms in acts and proceedings. The canceled scheme considered any actions, requirements, requests or submissions made before CRE on hold, to be revisited at a time when the federal health authority or Mexico City authorities considered the epidemiological risk to be over.

The new agreement, A/023/2023, also invalidates the A/004/2023 scheme, through which legal deadlines and terms were resumed in an "orderly and staggered" manner. The latter agreement sparked significant controversy, with experts warning that it would further hinder CRE's ability to process permits. The delays had already caused tension between the US and Canada, as it was seen as a part of Mexico's uncompetitive energy policy. CRE would only admit a limited number of applications per month: 50 for hydrocarbons, 120 for pre-registration and 15 for electricity.

Under the latest agreement, CRE reverts to the permit processing model used before the pandemic. The regulator faces a backlog of around 9,000 applications, pending update, revisions and resolutions, reports El Economista. According to the Association of Regulated Companies in the Energy Sector (ARSE), despite the reopening of processing, the number of denied permits is still surprising.

Last week, CRE denied self-consumption fuel stations permits to Bimbo and Alsea, set to be located in Guanajuato and Chihuahua for Bimbo and the State of Mexico for Alsea. The commission also denied a similar permit to Fresnillo’s Minera Juanicipio in Zacatecas.

CRE argued that permits were denied due to non-compliance warned by CFE, as well as what is established in the Federal Law of Administrative Procedure and/or in the regulations for activities referred to in Title 3 of the Hydrocarbons Law. Twenty-seven other requests were approved, although commissioners reported to have witnessed irregularities in the processes.

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