Experts See Opportunity for Energy Sector as Key Summit Unfolds
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Experts See Opportunity for Energy Sector as Key Summit Unfolds

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Perla Velasco By Perla Velasco | Journalist & Industry Analyst - Thu, 01/12/2023 - 08:21

Experts agree on the need to provide certainty to attract more investment and enhance energy development during the North American Leaders’ Summit meetings. Nevertheless, with views to launch her presidential campaign, Sheinbaum shared that if elected she would continue with the current administration’s energy strategy.

Still, private players reaffirm their commitment to further developing Mexico’s energy industry. SEMARNAT reported it received the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) documentation for the construction of the solar power plant SAAS Photovoltaic Park.

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Canada Aims to Solve Energy Dispute During Leaders’ Summit

This week, political leaders from Canada, Mexico and the US met in Mexico City for the North American Leaders’ Summit (NALS). Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that he aimed  to solve the dispute regarding energy policy measures that prioritize Mexican companies during this summit. Trudeau stressed he understood President López Obrador’s efforts to strengthen state-owned energy companies, however, “he has to do it in a responsible way and abide by the rules,” Trudeau said.  

Mexican, Canadian Leaders Discuss Energy at NALS

While the topic of the energy dispute had been sidelined from the agendas of the three leaders at NALS, addressing this matter was one of Trudeau’s priorities for the summit. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador agreed during a bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to give hearings to Canadian companies that consider themselves aggrieved by the reform of the electricity sector, which has been criticized for reportedly benefiting Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) and the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) over foreign companies. This meeting marks the end of the North American Leaders’ Summit (NALS). 

IMCO Highlights Certainty as Key goal of Leaders’ Summit

The Center for Research in Public Policy (IMCO) emphasized the key points to capitalize on the meeting and further achieve cooperation as well as integration in North America. The institute’s analysis refers to the pressure that Mexico’s protectionist policies placed on industries, hampering the efficiency of foreign investment. IMCO’s analysis underlines the importance of certainty to further develop the energy industry and carry on with the energy transition. 

SAAS Photovoltaic Park Delivers EIA to SEMARNAT

The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) reported it received the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) documentation for the construction of a solar energy power plant called Saas Photovoltaic Park by renewable energy firm SAAS. The complex will be constructed in Peto, Yucatan. To compensate for the environmental impacts, SAAS said it will implement mitigation measures and may establish auxiliary compensatory measures.

Sheinbaum Supports the Strengthening of CFE

Claudia Sheinbaum, Mexico City’s Mayor, shared during an interview that Mexico’s state-owned energy companies strengthen the country and allow for private competition with an open market share of around 46 percent. Sheinbaum said that if elected, she would continue with López Obrador’s electricity reform. The mayor shared that to have a strong electric industry, a state-owned company must control more than half of the market while the rest remains open for private competition.

Fugro Aims to Help Save the World’s Oceans Using Geodata

Fugro, the world's leading geodata specialist, has become a global benchmark within the private sector for its environmental efforts. Fugro is partnering with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (IOC-UNESCO) to actively support the Ocean Decade. Under this partnership Fugro is helping to lead two key working groups: the Data Coordination Group is focused on the development and implementation of an Ocean Decade Data Strategy to improve the way global ocean science data is accessed and shared, and the Corporate Data Group is focused on creating frameworks and mechanism to unlock privately owned ocean data for the benefit of humanity.

German Companies Call for Clean Energy

Members of the Mexican-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CAMEXA) met with Raquel Buenrostro, Mexico’s Minister of Economy, to talk about their need to see more electricity generated from renewable energy sources in order to meet international clean power requirements. “It does not matter which company supplies the energy, it could well be a green branch of CFE,” CAMEXA associates commented during the meeting.

Domestic Electricity Tariffs Will Rise by 0.6 Percent in January

In January 2023, electricity tariffs for CFE’s basic supply will see an average increase of 0.61 percent compared to December 2022. By December 2023, CFE expects an increase of 7.16 percent. According to CFE, domestic low-consumption electricity tariffs only increased 5.9 percent until September 2022, despite general inflation hovering around 8 percent. Industrial tariffs increased by 6.3 percent and commercial tariffs by 5.9 percent

López Obrador Proposes Candidate for CRE Presidency

After being elected as President Commissioner of the Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) in 2019, Leopoldo Vicente Melchi finished his term on Dec. 31, 2022. President López Obrador announced his three candidates for CRE’s presidency that will finish their term in 2029. The three candidates proposed by López Obrador are Alfonso López Alvarado, Leopoldo Melchi in an extension of his original term and Víctor Palacios Gutiérrez.

CFE Looks Back on 2022 Achievements

According to the report, throughout the year, CFE strengthened its infrastructure, improved purchases and spending, built infrastructure for the program Internet for All and retained low electricity prices below inflation levels. The document also mentioned the previous administration’s energy policy and the 2014 Energy Reform, labeling it as a “dismantlement project.” Furthermore, according to Mexico Evalúa, CFE had received MX$79.3 billion (US$4.09 billion) to subsidize domestic electricity tariffs by the end of 3Q22.

Clean Energy Could Boost Mexico’s Growth

According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), various benefits would become apparent if Mexico succeeds in achieving the 35 percent goal such as significantly reducing the cost of electricity production by saving US$1.1 billion, potentially generating US$17 billion in new investment opportunities, creating more than 72,000 jobs and reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants.

Photo by:   Twitter @lopezobrador_

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