Mining and Energy Minister Bento Albuquerque told a group of 12 European diplomats that Brazil’s government was pushing ahead with plans to allow mining on indigenous reserves. He said that “significant leadership” from native communities had asked for the opportunity to mine on their lands. President Jair Bolsonaro will send a bill to Congress later this month to regulate the activity.
By the end of this year, the Brazilian government hopes to have completed at least 18 projects of selling off public property, including public-private partnerships, privatizations, concessions, and leases. Estimated investments from these infrastructure projects total over BRL 27.7 billion ($6.8 billion).
Brazil federal government expects to raise R$6 (US$1.5) billion in 2020 from the sale of its real estate holdings. The forecast is to raise R$3 billion from the auction of 425 properties, including land, apartments, houses and stores, and the remainder from the sale of a portion of 100,000 plots of land under an outdated “forum” regime (similar to a a perpetual lease).
France’s Engie is considering acquiring a 51% stake in the hydroelectric dam Foz do Areia, owned by Brazilian state power company Companhia Paranaense de Energia. The dam would be jointly run with Copel whose license expires in 2023.
Brazilian president would like to privatise the country’s postal service immediately, but will wait for the technical analysis by development bank BNDES, presidential spokesman Otavio Rego Barros said. He also said that Jair Bolsonaro will “make an effort” to accelerate privatisations during his tenure to reduce the size of the Brazilian state.
The National Bank for Economic and Social Development (BNDES) has invited eight banks to broker the sale of part of its Petrobras portfolio shares through a public offering of secondary distribution. The operation is expected to be done by March. . The development bank owns about 19% of the preferred shares and 10% of the common shares (as voting rights) of the oil company, which today are worth about R $ 56 billion.
The federal government is considering compensatory mechanisms for a possible rise in fuel prices if the crisis involving the United States and Iran hits the international oil market any harder, said Mines and Energy Minister Bento Albuquerque after meeting with President Jair Bolsonaro. However, he practically ruled out the possibility of instituting some kind of subsidy.
Former senator and two-time governor of Matto Grosso, 63-year old billionaire Blairo Maggi, has been instrumental in the growth of Brazil’s agribusiness sector. He remains a leader of the “ruralist bench”, the agribusiness lobby that dominates Congress and supports President Jair Bolsonaro. In an interview with Al Jazeera, Maggi says that it is possible to increase Brazil’s agribusiness in a sustainable way.
Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro said on Thursday that a bill authorising mining on protected indigenous reserves was ready and only needed to be sent to Congress for consideration. Bolsonaro told supporters that indigenous people should also be allowed to commercially farm on reserves, a practice currently prohibited, and that native populations should be involved in a drive to expand the country’s beef production.
Brazil’s Economy Minister Paulo Guedes said he had reached agreement with Congressional leaders on modernizing the country’s complex tax system next year and one option could be taxing online transactions. Brazil has brought its snowballing public debt under control with reform of the costly pension system and spending cuts, he said, while interest rates are at record lows after the central bank cut its benchmark Selic rate to 4.50%.