Minister Lobao Sees Petrobras Overcoming Pre-Salt Challenge

The Pre-Salt and the Future of Brazil seminar continues this Wednesday (09/23), with the participation of Mines & Energy minister, Edison Lobão, and of governors Sérgio Cabral (Rio de Janeiro), Paulo Hartung (Espírito Santo), Eduardo Campos (Pernambuco), and Jaques Wagner (Bahia). Representatives Antonio Palocci, Henrique Alves, Arnaldo Jardim, Arlindo Chinaglia, and senator Renato Casagrande, also attended the event.

Mines & Energy Minister, Edison Lobão, opened the second day of the seminar, in Brasília (FD). Lobão emphasized that the new scenario will demand a huge research effort of Petrobras and of other companies, but that the challenge "will be overcome," leading to a true revolution in the sector and to growth opportunities for the domestic industry. Lobão also said the government determined it was necessary to capitalize the company.

"The capitalization will allow Petrobras to increase its investment capacity and secure new resources in the financial market," he said. While speaking about the creation of the Social Fund, Lobão emphasized that the wealth to be generated by the pre-salt belongs to the Union and, thus, to the Brazilian people. "It is fundamental for the government to be able to manage the resources," he defended.

Mentioning the good economic moment the country is experiencing, Lobão stated that the strategic nature of the pre-salt wealth justifies the incorporation of Petrosal and increased Petrobras participation." We must bear in mind that oil is a strategic reserve, both here and everywhere else in the world. It is the point of balance in geopolitical terms. This justifies the creation of a state-owned company that will allow the political management of the pre-salt and afford Petrobras greater participation in exploration," said Lobão, emphasizing Petrobras has the knowledge that is required about the Brazilian sedimentary basins.

The purpose of the event is to discuss the issues encompassed the proposal for the new oil exploration and production regulatory model, with the implementation of the production sharing model and with Petrobras' participation as the sole operator of all pre-salt fields.