Brazil development bank has no plan for Petrobras emergency loan

miércoles 17 de diciembre de 2014 15:53 GYT

RIO DE JANEIRO Dec 17 (Reuters) - BNDES has no plans to make an extraordinary loan to Petroleo Brasileiro SA to help Brazil's state-run oil company get through a cash crunch made worse by a growing corruption scandal, Luciano Coutinho, president of the state-run development bank, said on Wednesday.

Petrobras, as the company is known, has been unable to release third-quarter financial results more than a month after the legal deadline because of the scandal and could be cut off from capital markets if it does not file annual audited 2014 results by April.

Because of the scandal, Petrobras' auditor, PricewaterhouseCoopers, refused in November to certify the company's third-quarter financial statements. Petrobras missed a self-imposed deadline to fix the problem on Friday.

In November, Petrobras said it might have to write down the value of its assets to account for corruption, a situation that could result in a large loss.

If Petrobras is cut off from capital markets, it might have to seek cash from Brazil's government and taxpayers.

Failure by the auditors to approve full-year 2014 results by April could force early repayment of as much as $11 billion of bonds and a $5.8 billion local bank loan.

Coutinho, who has been suggested as a leading candidate to run Petrobras if Chief Executive Officer Maria das Graças Foster steps down because of the scandal, said he had not been consulted.

"It wouldn't be my place to comment" on the speculation, Coutinho added.

Earlier on Wednesday, Foster said at a press conference in Rio de Janeiro that she had offered to step down but that Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff had refused her resignation.

Foster pledged to cut spending to avoid borrowing in 2015.

"We will not knock on the door of the government for money," she said. (Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Writing by Jeb Blount; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)