PEMEX and the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) will reward oil and gas innovation with the creation of a prize covering the fields of physics, biology, chemical and health sciences, the state-owned oil company said this week.
The initiative “seeks to encourage Mexican students to undertake research to generate innovative solutions, permitting PEMEX and the country to maximize the value of its oil resources,” the company said on a press release. The agreement also serves to fortify links between the NOC and Mexican academic institutions.
The call for new answers to Mexico’s oil and gas problems comes amidst the challenge of reversing the country’s 12-year decline in oil production. The NOC’s oil production levels have plummeted since 2004, when it produced an average of 3.38 million barrels per day (bpd). In 2016, the company averaged 2.46 million bpd.
PEMEX’s Director General José González Anaya said the collaboration with UNAM will broaden the strengths and competitive advantages of the NOC as it transforms and faces the challenge of a newly opened oil and gas market. The prize comprises two categories covering undergraduate and postgraduate levels, and spans mathematical physics, general engineering and biological, chemical and health sciences.