Language:
Benjamín Torres-Barrón

Benjamín Torres-Barrón

Partner
Baker & McKenzie Abogados, S.C.

Biography

Benjamín Torres leads Baker McKenzie's Energy, Mining & Infrastructure (EMI) Practice Group in Mexico and is a member of the EMI Global Steering Committee at the Firm. He joined the Firm in 1998. He is recognized as a "Highly Regarded Lawyer" by IFLR, and is also listed as a recommended lawyer by Who’s Who Legal for oil, gas and project finance in Mexico. He is recognized as one of the country's leading lawyers in the energy and natural resources area (Band 1) by both Legal 500 and Chambers Latin America. For several years, he has been acknowledged by the magazine Petróleo & Energía as one of the top 100 leaders in Mexico's energy industry and he currently serves in its editorial board.

Benjamin is the president of the Energy Committee in AmCham Mexico. In addition, he has lectured for the energy and sustainability law master’s degree program at Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León and taught energy law classes at Universidad Autónoma de Ciudad Juarez and business law at ITESM Campus Ciudad Juarez. He has served at the energy editorial boards of Reforma and Norte newspapers, and is a member of Potentia (private oil and energy business club). He is a member of the advisory board of GRI, chair of the Mexican Chapter of ISME (International Society for Mexican Energy) and a member of Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN).

Practice Focus

Benjamin handles all legal matters related to the development and construction of real estate, mining, infrastructure and major projects. His experience includes advising clients on the development and construction of projects related to oil, natural gas, water, waste, railroad, ports, airports, highways, LPG, LNG, biofuels, energy efficiency, electricity and public bids called by Pemex, CFE and other Mexican governmental entities.

He has represented clients before the regulatory authorities and agencies in matters regarding energy projects and advised clients on maritime and navigation matters, due diligence, development, drafting and negotiation of contracts and financing. He also has advised clients regarding regulatory issues in connection with the sale, acquisition, leasing, subleasing, rights of way, construction, maritime transportation, trusts, insurance, utilities, environmental and ejido matters in connection with energy, hospitality (tourism), residential, mining and industrial projects. His professional expertise also includes project financing, corporate law, joint ventures, and mergers and acquisitions.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Advised as lead Mexican counsel to DEA Deutsche Erdoel AG on the acquisition of six exploration and appraisal blocks held by Sierra Oil & Gas Holdings, LP, and its corresponding subsidiaries in Mexico covering approximately 9,400 square kilometers in the core part of Mexico’s Sureste basin, including a 40% interest in Block 7, which contains a significant part of Zama, one of the world’s largest shallow water discoveries in the past 20 years. This transaction is considered the largest upstream M&A transaction in Mexico since the liberalization of its petroleum sector in 2013 and it was awarded by AIPN as Deal of the Year during the International Petroleum Summit in 2019.
  • Advised ENGIE Mexico in the acquisition, construction, development and financing of several wind and solar photovoltaic power projects in different locations in Mexico, and the prequalification process before CENACE under the long-term auctions SLP-1/2016, SLP -1/2017 and SLP-1/2018.
  • Advised PEMEX regarding an arbitration award issued by the ICC International Arbitration Court to solve the dispute of a contract entered into by Pemex Refinación and Conproca for the reconfiguration and modernization of a refinery in Mexico.
  • Represented Shell in the formation of a joint venture with Comercial Importadora S.A. de C.V. and purchase of 50 % of its shares with respect of its business in Mexico for the manufacture, import, supply, distribution and sale of lubricants, including the license of Quaker State brand in Mexico.
  • Advised Anadarko Petroleum Corporation in connection with its entry in the Mexican oil & gas upstream sector, as well as its participation in the Round 1 public tenders called by the Mexican National Hydrocarbons Commission for the award of hydrocarbons exploration and production contracts, including the preparation of the pre-qualification documents and requirements.
  • Advised PTTEP MEP in connection with its participation in the Round 2.4 public tender called by the Mexican National Hydrocarbons Commission for the award of hydrocarbons exploration and production contracts, including the pre-qualification and requirements for the execution of the License Agreements for Blocks 12 and 29 and the corresponding JOAs with its consortium partners.
  • Advised Valero Services Inc. in connection with the preparation and negotiation of terms and conditions to contract firm storage capacity of liquid petroleum products in three new built storage terminals to be located in Veracruz, Puebla and Mexico.
  • Advised First Energy Bank/MENAdrill Investment Company in connection with the lease of various maritime oil rigs to PEMEX Exploración y Producción.
  • Represented INPEX Corporation in the Round 1 and TRION Farmouts public tenders called by the Mexican National Hydrocarbons Commission for the award of hydrocarbons exploration and production contracts, including the preparation of the pre-qualification documents and requirements.
  • Advised ATCO Group in connection with its entry in the Mexican energy market, as well as with the preparation of the bid proposal submitted before CFE for the award of a natural gas transportation service agreement, including the development, construction, operation and maintenance of a pipeline, as well as the procurement of an open access natural gas transportation permit from the CRE, interconnection agreements with PEMEX and filings before the Mexican Antitrust Commission.

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN)
  • Petróleo & Energia Magazine - Editorial Board
  • Energy Committee of the American Chamber in Mexico (Chair)
  • Fundación Paso del Norte para la Salud y Bienestar (Honorary Board Member)

Admissions

  • Mexico (1998)

Education

  • Universidad Corporativa Unión Fenosa (Diploma Power Distribution and Generation Business) (2003)
  • Club Superior de la Energía (Business Course Energy) (2003)
  • Georgetown University Law Center (LL.M.) (2001)
  • Tecnológico de Monterrey (M.C.L.) (1998)

Languages

  • English
  • Spanish

Previous Offices

  • Juarez