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    Petrobras asks government about privatisation

Summary

Brazil’s president said the release of the government's controlling interest in the company was under consideration.

by: Daniel Graeber

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Complimentary, Natural Gas & LNG News, Americas, Corporate, Corporate governance, Political, Ministries, Privatisations, News By Country, Brazil

Petrobras asks government about privatisation

Brazilian energy company Petrobras said October 25 it had inquired about recent reports the government was looking to sell off its controlling interest in the company.

The Reuters news service reported that Brazilian senate leader Fernando Bezerra confirmed that government officials were reviewing the possibility of privatising Petrobras through a share sale.

That followed word from Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro that divesting from Petrobras was “on our radar,” but any potential privatisation would be “very complicated,” Reuters added.

Petrobras said it had reached out to the ministry of the economy to verify the claims.

“Petrobras will inform the market of any relevant facts that may be indicated by its controlling shareholder,” its statement read.

The Brazilian national energy company itself is in the midst of a sweeping divestment programme aimed at paying down its debt and freeing up capital for deepwater offshore projects

Soaring fuel prices have been a source of frustration for the Brazilian president. As with global natural gas prices, road fuels are becoming increasingly expensive. According to Reuters, Petrobras is set to raise the price of gasoline and diesel this week.

In February, Bolsonaro fired Petrobras CEO Roberto Castello Branco out of frustration with the company’s decision to hike fuel prices.