Bolsonaro says he will only interfere in Petrobras through “legal means”

President Jair Bolsonaro (PL) said this Thursday (5/12) that there will be no interference in Petrobras, unless, according to him, “through legal channels”. The statement was made during a car ride through Pariquera-Açu, in São Paulo.

Even before assuming the Presidency of the Republic, Bolsonaro appointed Roberto Castello Branco to command Petrobras. Then, in February 2021, he replaced the then head of the oil company with General Joaquim Silva e Luna. This year, the military left the state-owned company after the country’s representative nominated José Mauro Ferreira Coelho for the presidency of the state-owned company.

On the last two occasions, the exchanges were made amid the rise in fuel prices.

It is up to the government to indicate a name for the command of Petrobras. For a replacement to be carried out, the indication needs the approval of the company’s Board of Directors.

This Wednesday (11/5), amid demands for high fuel prices, Bolsonaro fired Bento Albuquerque from the Ministry of Mines and Energy. Adolfo Sachsida was appointed as the holder of the portfolio.

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Petrobras takes advantage of the “suffering” of the people

On a tour of the city of São Paulo, President Jair Bolsonaro said that the oil company is, increasingly, profiting from the suffering of the Brazilian people.

Last week, Petrobras announced a profit of R$ 44.561 billion in the first quarter of 2022 – a result 3,718.4% higher than the one recorded in the same period last year, when the state-owned company earned R$ 1.167 billion.

“[A Petrobras] It has absurd profits and it seems that it does not think about enforcing its commercial role as foreseen in our Constitution. […] Petrobras is increasingly making more money from the suffering of the Brazilian people,” Bolsonaro said.

Petrobras is “fat and obese”

On Wednesday, the president said that, “thinking about Brazil”, the state-owned company should reduce the profit margin of its shareholders. In his words, Petrobras is “fat and obese”.

“Petrobras is too fat, it’s obese! Its board and directors could indeed reduce the profit margin. Their profit margin is around 30%, while the other oil companies are at a maximum of 15%. Petrobras, you are Brazil! Or whoever is inside doesn’t think about his country? The people are suffering a lot with the price of fuel”, said the president in an interview with Balanço Geral de Maringá (PR).

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