By Gram Slattery and Sabrina Valle
RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Recent comments by Petrobras Chief Executive Roberto Castello Branco concerning the opportunity of a truckers’ strike will have consequences, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro stated on Thursday, including that “something will happen in the coming days.”
Bolsonaro didn’t additional specify what measures he would take with respect to the state-controlled firm, including that there can be no political interference at Petroleo Brasileiro SA, because the agency is formally identified.
In late January, Castello Branco stated truckers threatening to strike resulting from what they perceived as excessive home diesel costs weren’t the corporate’s downside.
Petrobras has repeatedly stated it sells fuels domestically consistent with worldwide costs.
But traders have been jittery about potential political interference at Petrobras for the final two weeks. Earlier in February, the corporate introduced it was altering its gasoline pricing coverage to permit home costs to vary from worldwide costs for longer durations of time than beforehand disclosed.
That prompted a number of analysts to downgrade their advice on Petrobras shares.
“As the head of Petrobras said a few days ago: ‘I don’t have anything to do with truckers.’ That’s what he said, the head of Petrobras. That’s going to have a consequence obviously,” Bolsonaro stated throughout a dwell chat broadcast on a number of social media platforms.
He then added: “I don’t have anything to do with this.”
Petrobras declined to touch upon Thursday night.
During the printed, Bolsonaro additionally stated he would remove federal taxes on diesel for 2 months beginning on March 1, with the aim of completely eliminating the tax.
Political interference with Petrobras’ gasoline pricing coverage has lengthy been a priority for the market. In 2018, Petrobras’ then-chief govt resigned when Brasilia stepped in to artificially decrease gasoline costs in response to a crippling nationwide truckers’ strike.
Earlier on Thursday, Petrobras introduced the best gasoline worth enhance because it modified its pricing coverage. Analysts at UBS calculated in a be aware to shoppers that the hike represented a ten% enhance in gasoline costs and a 15% enhance in diesel.
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