Petrobras: hope amid the storm
Petrobras, the oil giant 55.7% owned by the state, is often held up as a totem of Brazil’s success. The company is Brazil’s largest single exporter – last year its exports represented almost 9% of the country’s total – and its largest taxpayer, representing around 9% of federal, state and municipal taxes. So how is it faring?
Clearly the fall in the oil price below $50 in late November – having reached a record $147 on 11 July– has hurt Petrobras. However, the firm – and Brazil more broadly –has made a series of momentous finds in recent months. It has almost doubled its Society of Petroleum Engineers proven reserves of 12.6 billion barrels through discoveries in the Tupi field (5 billion-8 billion barrels) and nearby Iara field (3 billion-4 billion). Together they could eventually make Brazil one of the world’s largest oil producers.