Mexico's oil company cuts theft, output still falling

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico's state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos company says it reduced fuel theft 79% in the first quarter, but continues to lose money and produce less crude.

The company is known as Pemex. It produced an average of 1.66 million barrels of crude a day in the first three months of 2019, down about 11% from 1.87 million barrels in the same period of 2018.

The company used tanker trucks to bypass pipelines tapped by fuel thieves, cutting fuel thefts 79% as compared to December. The company has also reportedly poured concrete atop some frequently tapped stretches of pipeline.

The company loses money due to high taxes and transfer payments. It said Tuesday that losses in the first quarter totaled 35.7 billion pesos, or about $1.84 billion at end-of-March exchange rates.