MEXICO CITY, May 31 (Reuters) - Mexican state oil firm Pemex is in a position to meet its remaining 2023 debt obligations and is looking at refinancing strategies for next year, said Deputy Finance Minister Gabriel Yorio, who added the government could also help if needed.

"At this time we don't see Pemex facing problems to meet its commitments," Yorio told Reuters in a phone interview on Wednesday while on a visit to Gulf states to deepen trade, financial and diplomatic ties.

"They will very likely be able to meet their future commitments. If not, the Mexican government will provide them with the resources," he added.

Leftist oil nationalist President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has staked his reputation on reviving Pemex, which has been a powerful symbol of Mexican self-reliance since its creation in 1938.

Pemex had financial debt of $107.4 billion at the end of the first quarter, according to company data. Yorio said in April the firm had already paid off some $6 billion in debt for 2023 and had another $2.5 billion left to pay in the year.

For 2024, Pemex's debt is divided between market and bank debt and the state-run company is analyzing refinancing strategies, said Yorio, underscoring that "the main challenge is the refinancing of market debt, which is currently very expensive, at close to 10.5%."


Regarding his visit to Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, some of them important holders of Mexican debt, Yorio said Mexico was looking to help the countries develop their tourism industries and reduce dependency on oil.

Mexico, a popular travel destination, ranks in the top 10 globally in terms of international tourists and business generated through tourism.

"The Gulf countries are precisely interested in using this expertise that Mexico has in terms of the provision of tourism services and the tourism economy. They're making big investments in infrastructure," said Yorio, adding that Mexican hoteliers were eyeing investments there.

Yorio also said Mexico would seek double-taxation agreements and look to secure future imports of fertilizers for Mexican agricultural production, after Russia's invasion of Ukraine hit supply.

"Mexico is looking to diversify the markets where we buy fertilizer because 60% of the fertilizer imports used to come from Russia before the conflict," Yorio said.

Reporting by Anthony Esposito; Editing by Jamie Freed

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

magnifier linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram