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LatinNews Daily - 4 June 2019

In brief: Mexico

* Guillermo García Alcocer, the president of Mexico’s national energy regulatory commission (CRE), the oil, gas, and electricity sectors' regulatory body, has tendered his resignation. García Alcocer, who was appointed CRE president in April 2016 for a seven-year term, was seen as one of only two remaining independent commissioners in the seven-strong CRE following the resignation of four fellow commissioners since President Andrés Manuel López Obrador assumed office in December 2018. The resignations came after López Obrador accused the CRE of being more closely aligned with the interests of private firms rather than with the national interests (López Obrador is an advocate of strengthening the role of the state-run energy firms in Mexico’s energy market over private firms to defend national interests). The departures allowed López Obrador to appoint new commissioners, but these have been criticised by the political opposition for being too close politically to the president, raising concerns that this would undermine the CRE’s independence. García Alcocer also criticised the appointments on the grounds that they lacked sufficient relevant experience for the role, only for López Obrador to accuse him of being affected by a conflict of interest for having links with some private energy firms. In his resignation letter, García Alcocer, who will formally leave the post on 15 June, said that his decision answered to the fact that “the majority view within the CRE is now different from my own”