Brazil is celebrating a record shares deal that could make the country one of the world’s top energy exporters. The state oil company Petrobras has raised around 50 billion euros in the biggest ever global share offering.
The windfall from the deal will help fund investment in developing recently-discovered oil reserves off Brazil’s southern coast. The transaction fulfilled President Lula’s goal of increasing state control.
Aware of his left-wing past, the president acknowledged the irony of “this so-called capitalism-eater” hailing a capitalist landmark.
“It wasn’t in Frankfurt, it wasn’t in London, it wasn’t in New York,” he said, “it was in Sao Paolo that we launched the biggest ever capitalisation process in the history of global capitalism. Congratulations to Petrobras, to the Bovespa stock market and to the Brazilian people – we’ve worked hard to deserve this.”
The public share offer was delayed while Petrobras thrashed out a deal with the government. The new-found reserves of high-quality crude may be difficult to extract – but they could turn the company into one of the world’s top three oil giants.