Petróleo Brasileiro S.A., better known by the acronym Petrobras (), is a state-owned Brazilian multinational corporation in the petroleum industry headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The company's name translates to Brazilian Petroleum Corporation — Petrobras. The company was ranked #120 in the most recent Fortune Global 500 list. In the 2020 Forbes Global 2000, Petrobras was ranked as the 70th -largest public company in the world.


Skyscraper hosting Petrobras' offices in Paulista_Avenue,_[[São_Paulo..html" style="text-decoration: none;"class="mw-redirect" title="São_Paulo.html" style="text-decoration: none;"class="mw-redirect" title="Paulista Avenue, [[São Paulo">Paulista Avenue, [[São Paulo.">São_Paulo.html" style="text-decoration: none;"class="mw-redirect" title="Paulista Avenue, [[São Paulo">Paulista Avenue, [[São Paulo. Petrobras was created in 1953 under the government of Brazilian president [[Getúlio Vargas with the slogan "The Oil is Ours" (Portuguese: "O petróleo é nosso"). It was given a legal monopoly in Brazil. In 1953, Brazil produced only 2,700 barrels of oil per day. In 1961, the company's REDUC refinery began operations near Rio de Janeiro, and in 1963, its Cenpes research center opened in Rio de Janeiro; it remains one of the world's largest centers dedicated to energy research. In 1968, the company established Petrobras Quimica S.A ("Petroquisa"), a subsidiary focused on petrochemicals and the conversion of naphtha into ethene. Petrobras had begun processing oil shale in 1953, developing the Petrosix technology for extracting oil from oil shale. It began using an industrial-size retort to process shale in the 1990s. In 2006, Petrobras said that their industrial retort had the capacity to process 260 tonnes/hour of oil shale. In 1994, Petrobras put the Petrobras 36, the world's largest oil platform, into service. It sank after an explosion in 2001 and was a complete loss. In 1997, the government approved Law N.9.478, which broke Petrobras's monopoly and allowed competition in Brazil's oilfields, and also created the national petroleum agency Agência Nacional do Petróleo, (ANP) responsible for the regulation and supervision of the petroleum industry, and the National Council of Energy Policies, a public agency responsible for developing public energy policy. In 1999, the National Petroleum Agency signed agreements with other companies, ending the company's monopoly. In 2000, Petrobras set a world record for oil exploration in deep waters, reaching a depth of below sea level. In 2002, Petrobras acquired the Argentine company Perez Companc Energía (PECOM Energía S.A.) from the and its family foundation for $1.18 billion. This acquisition included assets in Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador, 1.1 billion barrels of crude oil reserves and production of per day. In 2005, Petrobras announced a joint venture with Nippon Alcohol Hanbai KK to sell Brazilian ethanol to Japan, called Brazil-Japan Ethanol. On 21 April 2006, the company started production on the P-50 oil platform in the Albacora East field at Campos Basin, which made Brazil self-sufficient in oil production. By November 2015, the company had accumulated $128 billion in debt, 84% of it denominated in foreign currencies.


Business areas

The company operates in six business areas, listed in order of revenue: * Refining, transportation and marketing – refining, logistics, transportation, trading operations, oil products and crude oil exports and imports and petrochemical investments in Brazil * Exploration and production – crude oil, natural gas liquids (NGL) and natural gas exploration, development and production in Brazil * Distribution – distribution of oil products, ethanol, biodiesel and natural gas to wholesalers and through the Petrobras Distribuidora S.A. retail network in Brazil * Gas and power – transportation and trading of natural gas and LNG, and generation and trading of electric power, and the fertilizer business * International – exploration and production of oil and gas, refining, transportation and marketing, distribution and gas and power operations outside of Brazil * Biofuels – production of biodiesel and its co-products and ethanol-related activities such as equity investments, production and trading of ethanol, sugar and the excess electricity generated from sugarcane bagasse

Production and reserves

Petrobras controls significant oil and energy assets in 16 countries in Africa, North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. However, Brazil represented 92% of Petrobras' worldwide production in 2014 and accounted for 97% of Petrobras' worldwide reserves on 31 December 2014, when the company had of proved developed reserves and of proved undeveloped reserves in Brazil. Of these, 62.7% were located in the offshore Campos Basin. The largest growth prospect for the company is the Tupi oil field in the Santos Basin. In 2015, the company produced per day, of which 89% was petroleum and 11% was natural gas.

International investments

Reserves held outside of Brazil accounted for 8.4% of production in 2014. The majority of these reserves are in South America; the company has assets in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Venezuela, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Petrobras owns refineries in Texas (100,000 barrels per day of throughput), Okinawa, Japan (100,000 barrels per day of throughput), and Bahía Blanca, Argentina (30,000 barrels per day of throughput). The company also owns exploration blocks in the Gulf of Mexico and through joint ventures has production in Nigeria, Benin, Gabon, and Namibia.


;North Region * REMAN - Refinaria Isaac Sabbá - Manaus (Amazonas) - 46 000 bpd ;Northeast Region * RPCC - Potiguar Clara Refinery - Guamaré (Rio Grande do Norte) - 37 700 bpd * LUBNOR - Lubrificantes e Derivados de Petróleo do Nordeste - Fortaleza (Ceará) - 8 000 bpd ;Southeast Region * REGAP - Gabriel Passos Refinery - Betim (Minas Gerais) - 150.000 bpd * REPLAN - Refinery of Paulínia - Paulínia (São Paulo) - 415 000 bpd * REVAP - Henrique Lages Refinery - São José dos Campos (São Paulo) - 252 000 bpd * RPBC - Presidente Bernardes Refinery - Cubatão (São Paulo) - 178 000 bpd * RECAP - Refinery of Capuava - Mauá (São Paulo)- 53 000 bpd * REDUC - Refinery of Duque de Caxias - Duque de Caxias (Rio de Janeiro) - 239 000 bpd ;South Region * REPAR - Presidente Getúlio Vargas Refinery - Araucária (Paraná) - 207 563 bpd * REFAP - Alberto Pasqualini Refinery - Canoas (Rio Grande do Sul) - 201 280 bpd ;Out of Brazil * Eliçabe - Buenos Aires (Argentina) - 31 200 bpd * San Lorenzo - San Lorenzo (Argentina) - 37 700 bpd * Refinaria Del Norte - Salta (Argentina) - 28 975 bpd * Pasadena Refinery System Inc - Pasadena (United States) - 106 000 bpd * Okinawa - Okinawa Island (Japan) - 100 000 bpd


In 1961, Petrobras geologist Walter K. Link published Link's memorandum, which implied that the company was better off exploring offshore instead of onshore. In 1963, Petrobras discovered the and Carmópolis oil fields. The company's growth was halted by the 1973 oil crisis. The entire country was affected, and the "Brazilian miracle", a period when annual GDP growth exceeded 10%, ended. Petrobras nearly went bankrupt. In 1974, the company discovered an oil field in the Campos Basin. This discovery boosted its finances and helped it restructure nationwide. In 1975, the Brazilian Government temporarily allowed foreign operators into Brazil, and Petrobras signed exploration contracts with foreign companies for oilfields in Brazil. The company was affected by the 1979 energy crisis, although not nearly as badly as in 1973. In 1997, Petrobras reached the production milestone of per day. The company also executed agreements with other Latin American governments and began operations outside Brazil. In 2003, on its 50-year anniversary, Petrobras surpassed of daily production. On 1 May 2006, after the Bolivian gas conflict, Bolivia's president Evo Morales announced the nationalization of all gas and oil fields in the country and ordered the occupation of all fields by the Bolivian Army. On 4 May 2006, Petrobras cancelled a major future investment plan in Bolivia as a result. The Bolivian government demanded an increase in royalty payments from foreign petroleum companies to 82%, but eventually settled for a 50% royalty interest. In 2007, Petrobras inaugurated the Petrobras 52 Oil Platform. The 52 is the biggest Brazilian oil platform and the third-biggest in the world. In 2007 and 2008, Petrobras made several major oil discoveries including the Tupi oil field (formerly known as the Lula oil field), the Jupiter field, and the Sugar Loaf field, all in the Santos Basin, 300 km off the coast of Rio de Janeiro. The oil fields were discovered by partnerships that include Petrobras, Royal Dutch Shell, and Galp Energia. However, estimates for the reserves of these new fields varied widely. The P-51 Platform, the first semisubmersible platform built entirely in Brazil, capable of producing up to 180,000 barrels of oil per day, started production in the Campos Basin in January 2009, and in February 2009, China agreed to loan Petrobras US$10 billion in exchange for a supply of 60,000-100,000 barrels of oil per day to a subsidiary of Sinopec and 40,000-60,000 barrels of oil per day to PetroChina. In August 2009, Petrobras acquired ExxonMobil's Esso assets in Chile for US$400 million. In September 2010, Petrobras completed a US$70 billion share offering, the largest share offering in history, to be used to develop newly discovered oil fields. Giovanni Biscardi and Machado Meyer represented Petrobras. Biscardi brought his Brazilian corporate practice to Greenberg Traurig in January 2020. In 2012, Petrobras surrendered permits to explore offshore in New Zealand. In July 2013, a worker strike action shut down production at several of the company's oil platforms. In September 2013, Petrobras sold eleven onshore exploration and production blocks in Colombia to Perenco for US$380 million. In September 2013 Organizações Globo reported on national television that the US government had been spying on Petrobras. This information was reportedly provided by US journalist Glenn Greenwald. Petrobras announced that it was investing R$21 billion over five years to improve its data security. In 2014, the company sold its assets in Peru to PetroChina for US$2.6 billion. Also in 2014, Petrobras set a new company record for average daily production of . in January 2020, Petroleo Brasileiro stated that it ended all of its business in Africa after completing the sale of a 50% stake in Petrobras Oil & Gas BV.

Corporate issues


The Brazilian government directly owns 54% of Petrobras' common shares with voting rights, while the Brazilian Development Bank and Brazil's Sovereign Wealth Fund (Fundo Soberano) each control 5%, bringing the State's direct and indirect ownership to 64%. The privately held shares are traded on BM&F Bovespa, where they are part of the Ibovespa index.

Social responsibility

Petrobras is a major supporter of the arts in Brazil.

Operation Car Wash and related protests in Brazil

In 2014, the largest corruption scandal in the history of Brazil was uncovered centered around Petrobras. Initially, the investigation was not focused on Petrobras executives, but rather small time doleiros (black market money dealers), who mostly used small businesses to carry out their transactions. The investigation discovered links to an executive at Petrobras, , the director of refining and supply. President Dilma Rousseff made one critical change in policy, the introduction of plea bargains, making it possible to offer deals in exchange for information leading to further arrests. It was a defining moment of the investigation. Costa later confessed that he and his colleagues had knowingly overpaid on contracts, funneling excess funds to personal accounts. Paulo Costa received kickbacks of 3% on all contracts. According to the investigation, a small number of top Petrobras officials colluded with an organized cartel of 16 companies to overcharge Petrobras for construction and service work in return for bribes and kickbacks. Petrobras officials pegged the total of all bribes at $2 billion at minimum. As of August 2015, 117 indictments had been issued, five politicians arrested, and criminal cases brought against 13 companies. Both Dilma Rousseff, who promised to cut corruption in her election campaign, and former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva served on the board of directors of Petrobras during the scandals and both were blamed, as well as the president of the lower house, Eduardo Cunha. Cunha was sentenced in March 2017 to 15 years in prison. Lula was implicated in multiple corruption investigations. Protests broke out calling for the resignation or impeachment of Rousseff. The most widespread of these occurred on 13 March 2016 in over 300 municipalities. Police estimates gave about 3.5 million protestors throughout the country. Some of the protests were in areas previously thought of as strongholds of the Workers Party, of which Rousseff was the leader. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation sued Petrobras and its auditors, PriceWaterhouseCoopers as a result of the corruption scandal. Later in September 2018, Petrobras agreed to pay $853.2 million as a settlement.

Environmental record

Petrobras's website notes several initiatives to preserve the environment. These include efforts to support both ocean and forest ecosystems. Most notably, Petrobras has sponsored population studies and conservation efforts for humpback whales in northeast Brazil. The company's efforts helped to rebuild Brazil's humpback whale populations from 2,000 in the mid-nineties to over 9,000 in 2008. Petrobras subscribes to the United Nations Global Compact, a voluntary agreement regarding human rights, working conditions, corruption, and the environment. In 2008, the Spanish consultancy firm Management and Excellence named Petrobras the world's most sustainable oil company.

Oil spills

Petrobras in popular culture

* In the ''Speed Racer'' live-action movie, one of the cars featured is the "Green Energy", a biodiesel-fueled racing car sponsored by Petrobras. * Petrobras sponsored the Brazilian Série A from 2009 to 2012. * Petrobras was a secondary sponsor for the AT&T WilliamsF1 Team from 1998 to 2008 and signed again with Williams F1 from 2014 onwards. From 2018, Petrobras left Williams and joined allegiance with McLaren. * Petrobras sponsored the Clube de Regatas do Flamengo in Brazil from 1984 to 2009 and Club Atlético River Plate in Argentina from 2009 to 2012. * The sauropod dinosaur ''Petrobrasaurus'' is named after this company.

See also

*History of Brazil (1945–1964) *Eletrobras *H-Bio *Ethanol fuel in Brazil *Petrobras 36 Oil Platform *Petrosix *Transpetro *Tupi oil field *Walter K. Link *Brazil- China Relations


External links

Petrobras' News Agency
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