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By THE PULSE NEWS MEXICO STAFF

With the government’s new Dos Bocas oil refinery slated to open in July and the expanded operations of the Paraíso refinery in Tabasco, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) said Tuesday, April 12, that Mexico will be self-sufficient in gasoline, diesel and turbine fuel production by the year 2023.

Speaking during his quarterly State of the Nation Address in the courtyard of the National Palace, AMLO said that expanded fuel production by the state-run Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) enterprise will allow the nation to stop importing gasoline and other fuels from abroad by next year.

He also said that an additional refinery was currently being constructed in Salinas Cruz, Oaxaca, which will produce low-cost gasoline, diesel and non-combustible fuels to help reduce contaminating emissions.

With all these projects, he said, “by 2023, we will be self-sufficient in gasoline, diesel and jet fuel.”

López Obrador went on to say that during his administration, Mexican petroleum extraction has increased to about 1.752 million barrels a day, and gasoline imports have decreased by 48 percent.

Consequently, he said, “Mexico has come forward and is experiencing a period of hope and transformation.”

During his trimonthly report, AMLO also said that if his controversial electricity reform bill does not pass Congress (it is scheduled to be voted on Easter Sunday, April 17, but is unlikely to pass since it will require a two-thirds majority vote, which the president’s party does not have), he has a “failsafe” mining bill to present that would ensure that the country’s lithium reserves remain in the hands of the government.

Because it would not require a change to the Mexican Constitution, that bill would only require a simple majority to pass, which AMLO’s leftist National Regeneration Movement (Morena) party does have.

“For the peace of mind of the Mexican people, I want to make it known that if we do not reach the two-thirds of the votes needed for a constitutional reform in electrical matters due to the boycott of the right-wing conservative, reactionary legislators, I will immediately send an initiative the next day to Congress to amend the Mining Law,” he said.

AMLO, never shy to attack his opponents, took advantage of the speech to call  opposition legislators who might dare to vote against his controversial electricity reform bill “traitors.”

This was AMLO’s 13th State of the Nation Address since he took office on Dec. 1, 2018.

His six-year term is due to terminate in December 2024.

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