Brazilian state prosecutors on Tuesday charged Fabio Schvartsman, the former chief executive of mining giant Vale SA, and 15 other people with homicide for a dam disaster last year that killed more than 250 people. Vale and TUV SUD were also charged with environmental crimes. Vale shares were down 2.5% in Sao Paulo yesterday trade.
Brazil Economy Minister Paulo Guedes attends this week the Davos Economic Forum, with the aim of attracting non-speculative foreign capital to finance projects, mainly infrastructure, showing the country’s improvements in inflation, risk, stock market rates and interests. The biggest attraction will be the privatisation and concessions package of state-owned companies, said the Privatisation Secretary, Salim Matar.
Petroleo Brasileiro has put up for sale its entire stake in the Golfinho and Camarupim deepwater clusters in the Espírito Santo basin. Petrobras holds 100% interest in both concessions, with the exception of exploratory block BM-ES-23, in Golfinho, where it owns 65%. Brazil’s state-run oil company has been selling assets in order to lower its debt.
President Jair Bolsonaro decided to end Brazil’s membership to the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac).Government sources said that the decision was due, among other reasons, to the presence of dictatorships in the block, such as Cuba and Venezuela.The new position was communicated last Tuesday to the members.
Brazilian government has welcomed the United States’ change of stance to support Brazil’s bid to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) ahead of Argentina. The decision shows the construction of a “solid partnership” in the Brazil-United States relationship,” capable of generating short, medium and long term” results, Foreign Minister Ernesto Araújo published in a social network.
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.