Senators contest LIE power law changes via Mexico constitutional action

Author: Angeles Rodriguez

2021/04/09

  • Total of 46 senators file constitutional action procedure with supreme court
  • Senators claim LIE changes violate 8 articles of constitution
  • Senator from ruling MORENA party supports procedure

MEXICO CITY (ICIS)-- A minority in Mexico’s Senate comprised mostly of opposition parties filed a constitutional action with Mexico’s supreme court on 8 April against changes to the electricity industry law (LIE).

The changes had been published in the federal official gazette (DOF) on 10 March after a majority in both houses of congress approved them. They are currently halted based on the dozens of definite suspensions two economic competition judges have granted to private companies since then.

The minority senators’ constitutional action argues that the LIE changes violate articles 1, 4, 6, 14, 16, 25, 27 and 18, as well as transitory article N.10 of the 2013 energy reform, senators of opposition parties PAN, PRI, MC and PRD said in an 8 April release.

According to the senators, the changes go against the human right to a clean environment and they violate the Paris agreement as well as other international agreements Mexico has signed regarding energy transition.

The LIE changes also breach legal safety and the non-retroactivity principles and represent an attempt against the free market, free competition and the US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement (USMCA), the statement reads.

The constitutional action also claims that the approved changes undermine the autonomy of energy regulator CRE and power market operator CENACE and go against the spirit of the energy reform.

Article 105 of the Mexican constitution enables constitutional action procedures to be filed by at least 33% of members in each house of congress within 30 days after a piece of legislation is published in the DOF.

A total of 46 out of the 128 senators sitting in the upper house of congress signed the procedure, including former PAN party head German Martinez, who is now a senator from the ruling MORENA party.

At least eight of the 11 supreme court justices need to vote in favor of the procedure to overrule the changes currently suspended by lower level economic competition judges.