Latinvex Quotes Steven Otillar on Opportunities in NAFTA Talks for New Energy Strategy

Akin Gump oil and gas partner Steven Otillar has been quoted in the Latinvex article “NAFTA Talks: A New Energy Strategy?” responding to comments by Energy Secretary Rick Perry that the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement presents an opportunity to create a “North American energy strategy” with Mexico and Canada.

Otillar said there should be “no debate that energy has not been fully addressed in NAFTA,” but energy integration in North America is now well under way. Crude oil exchanges, he noted, have taken place between the United States and Mexico, even when the U.S. crude oil export ban was still in place, and President Trump has approved the Keystone pipeline to bring crude oil from Canada to the United States.

Imports and exports of natural gas, refined products, and the ability to develop and transport hydrocarbons will be of key importance, Otillar said. As a net energy exporter, he added that “North American countries should be aligned on facilitating movement of expertise, equipment and resources among themselves, while enabling exports of crude oil, refined products and LNG.” NAFTA can serve a central role in this process, he said, and “help align the parties to form a united North American energy hub.”