Antonio J. Bermúdez, former Director General of Petróleos Mexicanos, has written two books in this memoir. One contains good advice for those now in charge of Pemex: oil in the ground is more valuable than money in the bank; import petrochemicals rather than export oil or gas; real reserves must provide for an economy in which petroleum supplies ninety-two percent of energy and in which consumption doubles every ten years; Tabasco-Chiapas reserves must not be used as reserves for other countries; Pemex must not be seduced by fantasies of “business” away from the economic independence of Mexico.

The second book deals with Pemex and the world: the central fact in Mexico’s contemporaneous history was nationalization of oil in 1938; nationalization was an affirmation of sovereignty defying international power; political power for oil-producing countries began with the Mexican expropriation; every source of oil anywhere has economic-political relevance at the world level; international pressure on Mexico has reappeared with the energy crisis and the vast discoveries in Tabasco and Chiapas; Mexico must benefit from the crisis produced by U.S. errors; in the world oil economy Mexico can act independently only within the limits imposed by proximity to the United States; Mexican dependence on the United States is great and increasing and not totally due to the nationalization of oil.

My advice to Mexico: guárdate y buena suerte.