TCU evaluates barring sale of Petrobras refinery to Arab fund – 04/01/2021 – Market

TCU (Federal Court of Accounts) Minister Walton Alencar gave a week to the court’s technicians to assess the need to suspend the sale of the Landulpho Alves Refinery (Rlam) by Petrobrás to Mubadala, a billionaire fund from the United Arab Emirates.

At the center of this discussion is the price of the refinery. Under the agreement, the fund will pay $ 1.65 billion. However, independent reviews consider that the unit could not be sold for less than $ 3 billion.

Fired from the presidency of Petrobras due to differences with Jair Bolsonaro, Roberto Castello Branco explained to employees in a farewell letter that the deal was not rushed, nor was it underestimated.

In the past, under the management of ex-president Lula, the president of Petrobras became involved with the TCU for the Pasadena refinery, in the USA, acquired at prices considered much above market reality. At the time, ex-president Dilma Rousseff was chairman of the oil company’s board of directors.

The deal with Rlam, as the refinery is known in the market, was announced about a week ago.

The case arrived at TCU with a representation of the attorney Lucas Furtado, who works for the Public Prosecutor’s Office at the court and was distributed to Minister Walton Alencar.

Furtado called for an immediate suspension of the sale as a precautionary measure. The plenary, however, disagreed during the session on Wednesday (31) and determined a technical evaluation to make a decision at the next meeting, probably.

In his vote, Alencar decided to proceed with a more detailed analysis of the case in order to avoid “damage to the public interest”.

Petrobras was questioned by the TCU and sent, in response, its explanations. This document was passed on to the technical area.

The value agreed with Mubadala has been questioned by the market. The Institute for Strategic Studies of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (Ineep) says that the refinery is worth US $ 3 billion. Investment bank analysts make similar calculations, varying between 30% and 40% above the amount accepted by Petrobras.

Wanted, Petrobras and the Mubadala fund did not respond until the publication of this report.

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