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Transparency and Environmental Information Management Remain Challenges For Mexican Mining and Oil Sectors

  • Press release

  • 10 November 2020

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Mining standards unimplemented; ministries struggling to enforce social and environmental requirements

10 November 2020 - Mining governance in Mexico is weak, despite its relevance in the supply of strategic minerals, according to a new study. Its authors suggest that authorities such as the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Environment should intervene and improve the standards of transparency and accountability in the sector.
These are the findings of an assessment by the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) using its Resource Governance Index (RGI) methodology. The assessment assigns 58 points to Mexico’s mining sector, which places it in the “weak” performance band, while the governance of the oil and gas sector scored 70 points, falling into the "satisfactory" category.
According to the evaluation, some policy areas key to mining development, such as licensing procedures and management of local impacts, have been weakened due to authorities’ difficulties in implementing standards related to access, transparency and accountability. The assessment also finds challenges in the oil and gas sector where authorities have trouble implementing policies related to the management of social and environmental impacts.
These findings provide Mexican decision-makers with useful information for improving the quality of governance, especially in light of issues related to the extractive industries, such as the lack of transparency, over-exploitation of natural resources, the challenges posed by the pandemic, the energy transition and the start of a new election year.
“Closing this ‘implementation gap’ could help Mexico to improve transparency and accountability in the extractive sector,” says Alonso Hidalgo, Latin America officer at NRGI. “The benchmark for the Ministry of Economy should be the platforms implemented by the National Hydrocarbons Commission (CNH) for contract management. Thanks to these measures, the CNH has improved its capacity to present public information in an orderly and comprehensive manner. Likewise, the Ministry of the Environment and the Safety, Energy and Environment Agency (ASEA) must improve the consistency and depth of information available on the social and environmental impacts of the extractive industries.”
NRGI’s analysts suggest that, although both the mining and hydrocarbon sectors present institutional problems in implementing established standards, the mining sector has the greatest challenges ahead. “Mining governance would be considerably improved if the necessary adjustments were made to implement the existing rules,” concludes Hidalgo.
More information:

Anna Cartagena
Latin America Communications Officer
Natural Resource Governance Institute
[email protected]
+34 656 645 628
Note to the editor:
  • The assessment used the methodology of the Resource Governance Index (RGI), a tool developed by the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) that assesses, on a scale of 1 to 100, the quality of governance arrangements in the extractive sector in resource-rich countries. The information was collected during 2019 for the period 2017-2018.
  • According to this assessment, Mexico’s mining sector scored 49 (weak) on value extraction and 62 (satisfactory) on revenue management. NRGI found the governance of the oil and gas sector to be “satisfactory,” with a score of 74 for value extraction and 72 for revenue management. The country’s enabling environment (relevant to both sectors) scored 62 (satisfactory).
  • The assessment is available at: The full results of the Resource Governance Index are available at

Latin America

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