In the July 2012 issue of E&P, Pemex CEO Juan José Suárez Coppel said, “People must think that we finally cracked the secret of exploration in Mexico, but the simple truth is that we finally started to invest in exploration.”

That investment is already paying dividends. The Mexican national oil company announced July 4 that it has discovered five wet-gas deposits in the Gulf of Mexico, expanding its portfolio of production opportunities in the Catemaco Fold Belt, according to

The Kunah-1 well was drilled to 2,157 m (7,070 ft) at a location about 125 km (77 miles) northeast of Veracruz, the site reported. The deposits are at depths of 2,845 to 4,103 m (9,327 to 13,459 ft).

Production tests indicate 345 MMcf/d with 110 bbl of liquids, various reports noted, and Pemex is quoting 3P reserves of 1.5 to 2 Tcf. The company also anticipates 30 to 40 MMbbl in oil reserves, though so far only gas has been discovered, according to

Having seen its output drop to about 2.55 MMb/d in recent years, Pemex managed to bring its IP reserve replacement to above 100% in 2011, a year ahead of schedule. Suárez Coppel said that this was an example of what Pemex can do under the right circumstances.

In June, the company awarded several contracts to boost production from its mature fields. And, candidates in the recent presidential election voiced their support for relaxing Mexico’s laws, which currently bar oil and gas concessions or risk contracts for private or foreign companies, according to Fox News.

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