UPDATE 2-Mexican Senate approves bulk of pending energy legislation

lunes 21 de julio de 2014 23:48 GYT

* Package of bills passes to lower house of Congress

* Energy reform the centerpiece of Pena Nieto's agenda

* Final approval of energy laws expected by early August (Updates with Senate approving pending bills)

By David Alire Garcia

MEXICO CITY, July 21 (Reuters) - Mexico's Senate completed on Monday approval of the bulk of legislation setting out rules and regulations for President Enrique Pena Nieto's opening of the oil and gas market, the cornerstone of his economic agenda.

The package of so-called secondary laws needed to implement the energy reform moves to the lower house of Congress, where the process of voting on energy bills passed by the Senate in the last few days has already begun.

Pena Nieto hopes that his decision to end a monopoly enjoyed since 1938 by state oil giant Pemex will spur faster economic growth, as well as reverse a decade of declining oil output in Mexico, the world's 10th biggest producer of crude.

Lower house committees on Monday also passed a hydrocarbons law at the heart of the reform that maps out the fine print of potentially lucrative oil and gas production licenses and contracts that will be offered to private investors.

The hydrocarbons law passed the Senate last week.   Continuación...