José Cedano
View from the Top

Get Rid of Old Practices to Boost Productivity

Wed, 01/18/2017 - 18:47

Q: What new lines of business are emerging from the market’s opening and what approach is ProOil taking?

A: For ProOil the main business opportunity is in services. Private and foreign companies are most likely to bring equipment and infrastructure but they are reluctant to bring foreigners to operate in Mexico. We need to invest in human resources and develop a highly capable labor force to meet the needs of incoming players. ProOil is fully capable of providing these services. We are focused on oil and gas control valves and field Instrumentations. The products we offer are needed at every level of the production chain, in oil platforms, refineries and petrochemical plants, so our work impacts every sector in the industry.

Q: How has the entrance of private technology and services providers over the last three years impacted the industry?

A: Companies that used to belong to PEMEX received investment from the private sector and their responsiveness and payment capacity improved greatly. Petroquímica Mexicana de Vinilo (PMV) was owned by PEMEX but Mexichem invested and immediately boosted its supply chain process.

There is also an urgent need for a change in mentality. The Mexican market needs to be able to quickly adapt and provide more competitive solutions through the acquisition of knowledge, skills and funding. It is not an easy transition because we are not used to addressing these problems. To boost our competitiveness we need to get rid of old practices that hinder productivity.

Q: How is ProOil dealing with technological advances?

A: Everything is automated now. Staff is no longer required along the process so there are fewer employees working in the plant, just in the control room. New technologies are absorbing the process and eliminating the need for human presence in the industry. We need to adapt all personnel to these new technologies to ensure they remain relevant.

We are constantly investing in human resources. Every couple of months we invite international providers to Mexico to train our labor force and share the market’s latest trends. We need to be prepared for the new customers that will be coming to the country. 2016 was a difficult year. The industry had to adapt to new market rules, new business schemes and the industry’s overall evolution. 2017 will bring opportunities for the Mexican oil and gas industry. All the companies that won in Round One will start operations, so companies providing services to the winners will have major developments.