Several U.S.-based workboat operators have vessels working for Pemex in the Bay of Campeche and are ready if Mexico opens up its deepwater market.
About half of Pemex’ prospective oil resources, 26.6 billion bbls., are in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. But in order to develop this, the Mexican government has to change its constitution or make some other arrangement. Currently, there are five floating rigs and 35 jackup rigs drilling offshore Mexico. Pemex has announced plans to add seven more high-spec jackups by the end of 2013.
Hornbeck Offshore Services has been in Mexico since 2002 and currently has seven vessels working there under long-term contracts. The Louisiana-based OSV operator said in its recent quarterly report that “while we believe that Mexico could develop into a large market for deepwater activity, we do not expect this to occur until the Mexican government has found a solution to their constitutional constraints.”
Tidewater’s Mexico operations are based out of Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche. In a quarterly conference call with analysts in August 2012, Tidewater CEO Jeff Platt commented on Mexico’s deepwater market potential.
“When politicians get involved, not just in Mexico but anywhere in the world, they can tend to mess things up a little bit if you will and potentially slow things down,” Platt said. “But overall the Mexico market is one that we’re very bullish on. We’ve been in Mexico for a long time and as Mexico opens up we’re going to have the right equipment, the right people and we’re going to be enjoying that market.”