(Reuters) The chief executive of Brazilian state-run oil company Petrobras said on Thursday the company must prepare for an “unavoidable” energy transition and wants to play a leading role in it.
Jean Paul Prates highlighted in a conference call with analysts that Petroleo Brasileiro SA’s deepwater operations put the company in a good position for wind power generation, as the South American country looks to develop offshore wind farms.
“We will maintain our protagonism in oil and gas production while working to finance and build this new future,” Prates said, adding his goal was to make Petrobras a balanced firm for it to play a leading role in the energy transition.
Prates, a former senator appointed by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to head the oil giant, took office in January with expectations he would oversee a strategic shift to more renewable energy projects and renewed investments in refining.
Petrobras on Wednesday posted a better-than-expected 38% surge in fourth-quarter earnings but proposed to trim its usually robust dividend, under pressure from the country’s new leftist government.
Shares in the company were down 1.3% on Thursday, underperforming Brazil’s Bovespa stock index.
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