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Mexico President Andrés Manuel López Obrador last week denied that an investigation of Comisión Reguladora de Energía (CRE) President Guillermo García Alcocer for alleged conflicts of interest was launched for political reasons.

López Obrador first accused García Alcocer of having a conflict of interest on Feb. 15, two days after García Alcocer, in an interview with El Financiero questioned the suitability of 12 candidates nominated by López Obrador to fill four vacant commissioner spots at the CRE.

The CRE, an autonomous regulatory agency roughly analogous to the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, oversees natural gas regulations and permitting. It also publishes the IPGN monthly natural gas price index, a compilation of post-transaction prices reported anonymously by shippers.

On Feb. 18, the ministries of energy, finance and civil service announced the investigation into García Alcocer. They cited as evidence that his brother-in-law works for the Mexican unit of Danish wind turbine manufacturer Vestas Wind Systems A/S, and a cousin of García Alcocer’s wife works for Santa Fe Natural Gas, a subsidiary of natural gas pipeline developer Fermaca.

In a press conference on Feb. 18, García Alcocer called the accusations false, citing that a declaration of his interests, including the jobs held by his relatives in the energy sector, had been publicly available since his appointment by the senate in 2016.

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