Business & Investment

Petrobras CEO resists resignation pressure from Bolsonaro: sources

© Reuters.File Photo: A man passing by the headquarters of the Brazilian oil company Petrobras in Rio de Janeiro

By Rodrigo Viga Gaier

Rio de Janeiro (Reuters)-Brazil’s state-owned oil company Petrobras CEO is resisting resignation pressure from President Jair Bolsonaro following tensions over rising fuel prices, he said. Two sources I knew directly told Reuters.

Roberto Castello Branco has been appointed CEO of Petrobras Brasileiro SA, known as a state-owned enterprise when Bolsonaro took office in early 2019, and has regularly dealt with presidential price complaints.

Bolsonaro expressed sympathy for truck drivers who threatened to raise diesel prices, but Castello Blanco said their dissatisfaction was not a company issue and Petrobras claimed to set prices regardless of political pressure.

“He won’t give in and won’t leave,” said one source who demanded anonymity to discuss confidential matters. “There was a time when the board was the parent government, but now it’s independent.”

On Thursday, Bolsonaro complained to Petrobras CEO in announcing a fuel tax cut.

“Petrobras’ head said a few days ago:” I have nothing to do with the truck driver. “Petrobras chief, that’s what he said. That will obviously bring results. “

Petrobras has raised fuel prices since the February 5 Reuters report disclosed details of the revised pricing policy.

“If something happens in Petrobras, it can’t and won’t interfere with Petrobras,” Bolsonaro said Thursday. “Something needs to change. It happens.”

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Petrobras CEO resists resignation pressure from Bolsonaro: sources Petrobras CEO resists resignation pressure from Bolsonaro: sources

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