Twenty-nine companies including a bevy of majors are seeking to pre-qualify for bidding in Mexico’s second auction of deep-water oil blocks in the Gulf of Mexico, scheduled for the end of January. Sixteen companies expressed interest in participating as operators—the companies responsible for the design and implementation of the exploration and development programs—and 13 others in non-operator roles, the National Hydrocarbons Commission said Thursday. The final list of individual companies and consortia that plan to participate in the auction will be known on Jan. 26. The auction is Mexico’s second for deep-water areas under the 2013 overhaul of the state-run energy sector, which opened oil exploration and production to private and foreign capital for the first time in almost eight decades. The government awarded eight of 10 blocks in its first deep-water auction at the end of 2016. Among companies that may bid in the Jan. 31 auction […]