Mexico lawmakers to propose raising 2018 budget after quakes

A committee in Mexico’s lower house will propose changing a draft of next year’s government budget by raising forecasts for oil prices and the exchange rate to help pay for reconstruction after recent earthquakes, a Mexican newspaper reported on Wednesday.

The finance committee in the lower house of Congress agreed to suggest raising oil price assumptions in the fiscal plan to $48.50 per barrel from $46 and the exchange rate to 18.4 pesos per dollar from 18.1 in the draft budget, according to La Jornada.

A spokeswoman for the finance ministry confirmed that the committee had made the changes to the draft.

The changes were aimed at increasing the budget to help with reconstruction efforts from recent natural disasters, including two large earthquakes in September that killed more than 460 people and causing around $2 billion worth of damage.

The committee’s budget proposal, which amends a draft by the executive branch, will have to be approved by the lower house of Congress, then pass to the Senate.

Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto said in September that funds would need to be reassigned from other areas of the government toward reconstruction efforts next year.

Reporting by Christine Murray and Sharay Angulo; Editing by Kim Coghill

Puerto Vallarta News

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