AMLO Downplays Fitch, Moody’s Downgrade of Pemex

Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) says listening to what the rating agencies say is like listening to the IMF, which he described as “discredited”

Pemex HQ in Mexico City. Photographer: Luis Antonio Rojas/Bloomberg
July 24, 2023 | 10:45 AM

Read this story in


Mexico City — Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Monday that the opinion of Fitch Ratings and Moody’s does not affect the country’s state oil company Pemex, after the rating agencies downgraded the company, since it has decreased in debt and reported profits.

Prices in Mexico Keep Falling but Still Fall Short of Banxico’s Inflation Target

“It does not affect anything (...) The opinion of the rating agencies is not to be taken into account”, AMLO said during his morning press conference.

On July 14, Fitch Ratings downgraded Pemex’s rating to “B+” from “BB-”, as a result of the Mexican company’s continued weak operating performance.

Days later, Moody’s maintained the company’s rating unchanged, but changed its outlook to negative due to the lack of fundamental changes in Pemex’s business strategy.


AMLO also compared the ratings of Fitch Ratings and Moody’s with the International Monetary Fund, which he described as ‘discredited’.

“It is like, at this point, taking into account the opinion of the IMF, which is totally discredited,” AMLO said, adding that the crisis in Argentina was exacerbated by the IMF for ‘political and ideological issues’.

“Macri was president and they wanted him to be reelected, and for the left not to win, so they put a lot of money into Argentina’s economy through credits authorized by the IMF by political orders,” AMLO claimed.


López Obrador said that Pemex’s debt has been reduced and requested the financial information of the state-owned company to deny the rating agency’s opinion, and expose it as false.

AMLO said Pemex’s debt has dropped 15.5% from 2018 to the first quarter of 2023.

Part of Fitch Ratings’ decision considered the environmental and social impact related to multiple accidents at Pemex’s operating facilities since February of this year that have killed and injured employees and damaged infrastructure and assets.

In this regard, AMLO said that the accidents reported by the oil company regarding the gas leak and the explosion were “not as big as reported in the media”, and acknowledged the death of two workers and the disappearance of an employee.

Arturo Solís contributed to this story.

Pemex’s Debt to Contractors Spawns a Shadow Business for ‘Coyotes’