HomeWorld RegionsLatin AmericaMexico's Fox Urges APEC to Develop Long-Term Energy Plan

Mexico’s Fox Urges APEC to Develop Long-Term Energy Plan

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July 23 2002 – Mexico’s president called on top energy officials from 21 nations to work on a long-term energy plan, saying Tuesday that investment and cooperation in the sector is key to economic growth.

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Members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum met Tuesday in Mexico City to discuss ways to support responsible, long-term energy policies ahead of a U.N. World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg later next month.

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Calling the energy sector “vital for our economies,” Fox said ministers should work on “new directives to shape a long-term vision.”

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“Meeting the needs of growing energy demands is a principal goal that our economies face,” he said.

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As California struggled with energy shortages, President George W. Bush and Fox agreed last year to work toward a regional energy plan that would include countries from Panama to Canada. On Tuesday, Fox said regions should continue to cooperate to satisfy energy needs and share technology.

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With the world’s ninth-largest oil reserves, Mexico relies on the energy sector to provide 40 per cent of the government’s income.

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Faced with dwindling resources for new projects, Fox has called for allowing greater private investment in the state-run oil company, Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex. The proposal has met opposition in Congress, where many lawmakers see the oil industry as a sacred government institution.

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On Tuesday, Fox urged Mexico to find ways to modernize the country’s energy sector, saying it was key to “assure the economic progress and meet the promise to…improve the quality of life for Mexican families.”

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Mexican Energy Secretary Ernesto Martens called on the 21 APEC nations to work together in areas like regulatory reform and energy savings.

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“All of these areas of cooperation offer our economies important support,” he said.

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APEC is a 21-member trade forum of Pacific rim nations.

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