Silveira acknowledges conflict with Jean Paul Prates and says the issue is “not personal”

Silveira acknowledges conflict with Jean Paul Prates and says the issue is “not personal”
Silveira acknowledges conflict with Jean Paul Prates and says the issue is “not personal”
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247 – The Minister of Mines and Energy, Alexandre Silveira, admitted the existence of a conflict between him and the president of Petrobras, Jean Paul Prates, motivated by the “different roles” they both play, but highlighted that the differences are healthy and not personal.” I have always had heated, real debates. But transparent debates about what I, as a government, defend at Petrobras; and the president of Petrobras, naturally, [defende] as president of a company. The roles are different. That’s why there is a conflict”, said Silveira in an interview with the newspaper Folha de S. Paulo.

One of the most recent disagreements was regarding the allocation of extraordinary dividends paid by Petrobras to shareholders. While Prates defended distributing 50% of the extraordinary resources, Silveira and the council disagreed with the position of the president of the state-owned company as they believed that the resources should be used by the state for investments, such as in clean energy.

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“There was no specific discussion about Petrobras’ dividends, which was very transparent. There was a natural discussion about the best allocation of extraordinary dividends. Always remembering that we defined and publicized that Petrobras would distribute, as it did, 45% of ordinary dividends. 20% more than what is determined by the State-Owned Companies Law”, said the minister.

“The extraordinary [dividendos], when asked the board, he understood and convinced us that the most prudent thing at that moment was to first have access to Petrobras’ approved investment plan, so that he would have insurance to distribute the remaining dividends. That’s why he allocated those dividends to an account that can be exclusively used to distribute dividends at the appropriate time. It was a noise. It was you sitting on top of a packet of cassava crackers. You made noise and then ate the bran, which is really delicious, even more delicious than eating the biscuit”, he added.

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Still according to Silveira, “the Petrobras board has to be a figure that is always very revered and respected by all of us. I do this with the president of Petrobras, who was my fellow senator. But I learned something else from [ex-vice-presidente da República] José Alencar. The day you give up your authority for a second, you never get it back. So, the authority that is delegated to me — and authority is not arrogance — I will not compromise in executing.”

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