Mexico City, Oct 25 (IANS) Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said that his new energy policy will not violate any agreements or contracts, after American Congressmen accused the policy of going against the spirit of the Treaty between Mexico, the US and Canada.
During a visit to a thermoelectric plant in Coahuila state on Saturday, Lopez said that the measures, which give preference to the state-owned companies Mexican Petroleum (Pemex) and the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE), will be legal, reports Xinhua news agency.
“We are not going to violate any agreement, any contract. We are going, according to the legal margins that we have, to give preference to both the Federal Electricity Commission and Pemex, that is clear,” he said.
Lopez defended actions to “rescue” the companies after it was revealed on Friday that the Congressmen had sent a letter to President Donald Trump in which they claimed Mexico was implementing measures that could affect American companies.
The Congressmen said that the Mexican government was giving preferential regulatory treatment to Pemex and had delayed or cancelled permits to US companies, in contradiction to the 2014 energy reform that opened the market to private participation.
The group of congressmen, which contains both Republicans and Democrats, said that the actions “violate and contradict” the spirit of the treaty, known as T-MEC in Spanish, which came into force in July to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Lopez said that T-MEC established the absolute and sovereign right of Mexico to decide on energy policy and his government would not take “a single step back” in rescuing the two state-owned companies.
Half of the electricity that Mexico consumes is purchased from private companies at “extremely high” prices, said Lopez at the CFE’s “Jose Lopez Portillo” thermoelectric plant in the municipality of Nava, near the border with the US.
“In the event that the current legal framework cannot strengthen Pemex and the Federal Electricity Commission, I will send, if necessary, an initiative to reform the Constitution,” he added.