Petrobras hopes to buy national stakes in wind and solar energy this year: CEO By Reuters


© Reuters. File photo: A man walks past the headquarters of Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobas) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. March 9. 2020. Reuters/Sergio Moraes/File

Written by Rodrigo Vega Gaer

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Brazilian state oil company Petrobras (NYSE:) said it will start buying stakes in local wind and solar projects this year to create a renewable energy portfolio of about 2 gigawatts. The company’s CEO told Reuters.

Petrobras is looking to buy stakes in assets already in operation, Jean-Paul Prats said in a phone interview over the weekend, as the company tries to begin a transition to green energy at the request of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

Petrobras’ plans reflect a radical change from the tenure of Jair Bolsonaro, whose government sought to sell assets and focus on deepwater exploration and production.

Prats did not specify the amount the company will invest this year in national renewable energy projects. By 2028, the company plans to invest $5.2 billion in solar and wind energy, according to its November business plan.

“The market will see and recognize that the transformation will take place in a firm and responsible manner,” Prats said.

Earlier this month, Petrobras’s president, Mauricio Tolmasquim, told Reuters that the company had ruled out investing in foreign solar and wind projects.

Prats added that Petrobras is looking forward to Brazilian Congress approving the regulatory framework for offshore wind energy. Last year, Petrobras presented its first studies on offshore wind energy, in cooperation with the Norwegian company Equinor.

“We will practically rule alone in this market,” Prats said. “This is our big bet.”

(Reporting by Rodrigo Vega. Edited in Spanish by Javier Lira)

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