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(abreviación de Petróleos Mexicanos )   Mexican Oil

Mexico is one of the world's largest oil producing countries, with estimated oil reserves of 26.9 billion barrels, and oil exports represent about one third of the national income. Petróleos Mexicanos ( Pemex), the world's sixth largest oil company, was set up following the nationalization of foreign-owned oil companies by President Lázaro Cárdenas in 1938. It has a monopoly, protected by the constitution, and controls virtually all aspects of oil and gas exploitation in Mexico, though some private investment is permitted in petrochemicals. The need for major investment to modernize the industry may, however, lead to a relaxation of these restrictions, though such reforms are likely to prove highly controversial.