Media advisory - North American unions denounce privatization of Mexico's oil sector

    OTTAWA, June 17 /CNW Telbec/ - While Mexico is steeped in an intense
public debate on the potential privatisation of PEMEX, a state-owned petroleum
company, North American energy sector unions continue to mobilize their
members and sound the alarm about the colossal loss that Mexico could suffer.
The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and the Communications, Energy
and Paperworkers Union of Canada (CEP) have delegated Canadian lawyer
Steven Shrybman, a trade specialist, to take part in a series of public events
to be held this week in Mexico.
    Coordinated by North American energy sector unions and their civil
society allies, these meetings will underline that Mexico is threatened with
losing its energy sovereignty and a vital source of revenue for public
services and social programs. "In this period of energy insecurity, the last
thing to do is to give up key resources to American multinational
corporations. The loss of PEMEX would impoverish Mexicans and create a
precedent that would be dangerous for public and state stewardship of energy
resources in North America," says CUPE National President Paul Moist.
    The privatization of North American energy resources is at the heart of
the so-called North American Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP)
supported by multinationals such as Exxon Mobil and Chevron. "This is
aggravating a situation where, in spite of our huge supplies, most Canadians
are entirely dependent on foreign markets to meet their needs," says CEP
President Dave Coles. "We ship most of our oil and gas to the U.S."
    Even if public ownership of the oil sector is enshrined in the Mexican
Constitution, President Felipe Calderon wants to pass a bill to introduce
privatization through the back door by allowing strategic operations to be
given up. CUPE and CEP are convinced that this process would entail major
trade constraints for Mexico under NAFTA.

    WHO:   Steven Shrybman, lawyer, Sack Goldblatt & Mitchell
           along with speakers from Mexico and the United States

    WHAT:  Press Conference by North American Energy Workers' Unions

    WHERE: Offices of the Sindicato Unico de Trabajadores de la Industria
           Nuclear (SUTIN)
           Viaducto Rio Becerra No.139
           Col. Napoles México, DF

    WHEN:  Wednesday, June 18, 2008 at 1 p.m.

For further information:

For further information: Michelle Walsh, Communications, CEP, (613)
230-5800, ext. 222; Sébastien Goulet, CUPE communications, (613) 808-0675

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