President Enrique Peña Nieto said Monday he planned to take a series of immediate measures to speed up the implementation of Mexico's energy industry reforms.
The Energy Secretariat will announce on Wednesday the exploration and production areas that state-owned oil giant Pemex will keep, as well as the areas that will be available in the first round of bidding for new oil industry contracts, Peña Nieto said during the ceremony in the National Palace at which he signed the implementing legislation for the energy industry overhaul.
The ceremony was attended by Cabinet members, state governors and representatives of all political parties except those on the left.
The measures will allow potential domestic and foreign investors to prepare for the first round of bidding, whose rules will be published in the first quarter of 2015, the president said.
Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, will release the list on Wednesday of areas in which it has decided to work with partners.
Peña Nieto said he planned to submit his nominees to the Senate this month for the chairmanships of the National Hydrocarbons Commission and the Energy Regulatory Commission.
"I will present the nominations for the independent directors of Pemex and the Federal Electricity Commission, as well as the independent members of the Technical Committee of the Mexican Petroleum Fund for Stabilization and Development," Peña Nieto said.
Theses moves will start "the integration of the new regulatory organs in the energy sector," with the boards of Pemex and the Federal Electricity Commission, or CFE, being put in place, the president said.
The Mexican Petroleum Fund for Stabilization and Development will be created next month, when the training program for oil industry experts will also be unveiled, Peña Nieto said.
The regulations enacted by the implementing legislation for the 2013 energy industry reforms will be published at the latest in October, providing "full legal clarity to new investments in the sector," the president said.
The executive order covering the restructuring and modernization of the Mexican Petroleum Institute will also be presented in October, allowing the body to act as a national research and development agency for the industry, Peña Nieto said.
These measures "will be taken in the short term to demonstrate with actions the government's commitment" to "immediately" put in place the energy industry reforms, whose implementing legislation was signed on Monday after months of debate in Congress and despite strong opposition from the left, the president said.
The new legal framework marks a "historic change that will accelerate Mexico's economic growth and development over the next few years," Peña Nieto said, adding that the country's energy resources would remain the property of Mexicans.
"In months, we overcame decades of lack of movement, (and) the barriers that prevented Mexico from growing in a sustained manner were toppled," the president said.