Senate leader Fernando Bezerra (MDB / PE) will try to include on Tuesday’s House of Representatives session an urgent request to vote on PLC 78/2018, which frees Petrobras to sell up to 70 % of the areas of onerous assignment and provides guidelines for the auction of the excess. The senator, with a request with 54 signatures, and has already spoken with the president of the senate to lead the discussion with party leaders on the morning of this Tuesday.
It will not be the first time that the government will try to approve a request for urgency for the onerous assignment project. In August, a request for urgency was filed for the bill, but ended up not going forward after it was noted that it did not have enough signatures.
The president must also put to vote a request made by Senator Fatima Bezerra (PT / RN), newly elected governor of Rio Grande do Norte, for PLC 78/18 to go through the Committee on Regional Development and Tourism, which she chairs. If urgency is not approved, the project must pass through the Infrastructure, Constitution, Justice, Citizenship and Economic Affairs Commissions. The first two are headed by Eduardo Braga (MDB / AM) and Edison Lobão (MDB / MA), both former ministers of energy and mines. The latter is headed by Senator Tasso Jereissati (PSDB / CE).
While not analyzed by the Senate Plenary, the PL of the onerous assignment does not open the deadline for receiving amendments and also receives no indication of rapporteurs in the committees.
After all, what’s at stake?
Through the Onerous Assignment, Petrobras acquired the rights to explore, evaluate and produce up to 5 billion barrels of oil equivalent (oil + natural gas) in six pre-salt areas of the Santos Basin. For this transaction, Petrobras paid R $ 75 billion (US $ 42 billion) in 2010. The volume of the entire project is being reviewed after the declarations of commerciality.
The financial engineering was created by the Lula government so that the company can capitalize on the Stock Exchange and the government’s participation in the company not diluted. The Union, at the time, used the same resources received by Petrobras to accompany the call for capital, which raised that year R $ 120 billion. As a result, it increased its participation in controlling the company from 40% to 48%.
The value of the Onerous Assignment Agreement was determined through negotiation between Petrobras and the Federal Government, based on technical reports prepared by independent certifying entities, which were contracted by Petrobras and ANP, under the terms of Law 12,276 / 10, resulting in a weighted average price of R $ 14.96 (US $ 8.51) per barrel per area.
In 2014, under the Dilma Rousseff government and with Grace Foster in charge of Petrobras, the National Energy Policy Council (CNPE) approved the direct contracting of Petrobras for the production of surplus volume in the areas of Búzios, Entorno de Iara, Florim and Nordeste de Tupi. The production sharing contracts for these four areas would be 35 years old and Petrobras would pay R $ 2 billion in signature bonuses and anticipate R $ 13 billion in surplus oil between 2015 and 2018.
At that time, the ANP and the government understood that the areas had between 9.8 and 15.2 billion barrels of oil equivalent surplus, 2.8 billion more in the lower estimate made today by the agency itself.