Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. — Petrobras, more commonly known as simply Petrobras (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˌpɛtɾoˈbɾas]), is a semi-public 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 operates in six business areas, listed in order of revenue:
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 8,112.8 million barrels of oil equivalent (4.9633×1010 GJ) of proved developed reserves and 4,599.7 million barrels of oil equivalent (2.8140×1010 GJ) 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 Lula oil field in the Santos Basin.
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 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.
Petrobras is a major supporter of the arts in Brazil.
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 1967, 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 1,877 metres (6,158 ft) below sea level. In 2002, Petrobras acquired the Argentine company Perez Companc Energía (PECOM Energía S.A.) from the Perez Companc Family Group 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 181 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (1,110,000 GJ) per day.
In 2005, Petrobras announced a joint venture with Nippon Alcohol Hanbai 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.
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 Recôncavo baiano 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 1 million barrels (160,000 m3) 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 2 million barrels of oil equivalent (12,000,000 GJ) 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 Lula oil field (formerly known as the Tupi 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.
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 televisionthat 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 2.863 million barrels of oil equivalent (17,520,000 GJ).
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. These money launderers tended to use small business to carry out their business but the investigation discovered links to an executive at Petrobras, Paulo Roberto Costa, 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 contacts. 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 nearly $3 billion. 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.
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.
|March 1975||6 million||Guanabara Bay|
|October 1983||1.5 – 3 million||Bertioga|
|August 1989||690,000||São Sebastião|
|January 1994||350,000 – 400,000||Campos Basin|
|May 1994||2.7 – 3.1 million||São Sebastião|
|March 1997||600,000 – 2.8||Guanabara Bay|
|October 1998||1 – 1.5 million||São José dos Campos|
|January 2000||1.3 million||Guanabara Bay|
|March 2000||7,250||São Sebastião|
|July 2000||4 million||Barigui Iguaçu Rivers|
|August 2000||1,800||Rio Grande de Norte|
|August 2000||4,000||Angra dos Reis|
|November 2000||86,000||São Sebastião|
|March 2001||1.4 million||Campos Basin|
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