Winner: $3BN Financing for Pemex Refinery Upgrades
Different state enterprises in Mexico came together in 2022 to structure a financing to
modernize two of state-owned oil company Pemex’s refineries.
The resulting $3 billion transaction, which wins the award for Structured Financing of the
Year, included a $900 million bridge loan to a Pemex subsidiary and a $2.1 billion revolving
loan to a Special Purpose Mexican Trust, backed by jet fuel receivables.
Pemex and national airport services company ASA joined forces with three state development
banks to design a complex financial structure using jet fuel receivables.
In June 2022, Bancomext, Banobras and Nafin structured the $900 million loan for Pemex
Transformación Industrial (PTI), a Pemex subsidiary, to finance the first stages of the
modernization works of the company’s Tula and Salina Cruz refineries located in the Hidalgo
and Oaxaca states.
This was followed in July with a $2.1 billion revolving credit facility that was done in two
tranches for a Special Purpose Mexican Trust backed by the jet fuel receivables. One tranche
was in Mexican pesos for the equivalent of $1.55 billion and a second tranche for up to $580
million. Both tranches came with a floating rate and were structured as 2.5-year revolving
facilities, with a 6-year amortization and a maximum tenor of 8.5 years.
“The most important innovation of this transaction was identifying and matching the interests
of Pemex, ASA and Banobras in a context that combined the jet fuel market in Mexico and its
future demand,” says Carlos Cortez, Pemex’s chief financial officer.
The three development banks designed the syndicated loan structure, mitigating risks via
interest rate swaps and foreign currency hedges.
The operation, which Pemex called the “funding structure to leverage residuals through jet fuel
receivables,” took into account the interests and strengths of the participants.
Pemex’s capacity to produce and supply jet fuel, the scope of ASA’s presence with 61 service
stations that supply more than 13.5 million liters of fuel daily to airports in Mexico, and the
timing and rates offered by the banks, which funds high-impact infrastructure projects.
The PTRI will use the resources from the project to invest in the Tula refinery, constructing a
coking unit to make better use of residuals. The total investment in the unit will be $2.64
billion. The unit will produce 78,000 barrels/day of diesel, 42,000 barrels/day of gasoline and
20,000 barrels/day of fuel oil.
Under the structure, the original $900 million bridge loan will be repaid as soon as ASA starts
acquiring jet fuel. ASA placed two orders under structure in 2022 and will continue in 2023.
“With each receipt of jet fuel that PTRI provides ASA, payment is made corresponding to the
differential between the sales price at the airport and the discount” agreed to under the
Jean Paul Farah Chajin, a senior partner at Mexican law firm Ritch Mueller, who has worked
with Pemex on other deals, says the transaction is part of a trend in the government and stateowned enterprises to find new financing structures.
“This was a very innovative way to provide liquidity,” he says, noting that Pemex and the
Mexican government are eager to find new ways to access markets. LF
Joint Lead Arrangers: Bancomext; Banobras; NAFIN
Financial Advisor: LCA Capital Advisors
Legal Advisor: Jones Day
All supporting financial institutions and law firms were transmitted to LatinFinance by the
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