INSIGHT-Brazil's Rousseff sticks to her guns despite investor pressure

jueves 15 de mayo de 2014 08:25 GYT
 

By Brian Winter

BRASILIA May 15 (Reuters) - Dilma Rousseff sometimes enters the cabin of her presidential plane, asks to see the flight plan and orders the pilot to fly around potential turbulence - even if it might add hours to the journey.

Since taking office in 2011, Rousseff has often tried to control Brazil's economy in the same hands-on way.

That's not going to change if she's re-elected in October, officials close to her say. Despite a sharp slowdown in growth, she plans to mostly ignore pleas by investors to alter her interventionist style or embrace sweeping pro-business reforms.

While a few market-friendly changes are likely, Rousseff will stick with a leftist policy mix that gives her control over everything from taxes to some companies' profit margins in an effort to ensure a "fairer," more equitable economy.

Reuters spoke to five officials who are helping Rousseff set priorities for a second term. They spoke on condition of anonymity because Rousseff has prohibited them from discussing her plans until the campaign officially starts in July.

The officials said the likely changes include a new finance minister who has a better relationship with investors; a renewed attempt to simplify what the World Bank calls the world's most complex tax system; and an enhanced, active role for Rousseff's predecessor and political mentor, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who could bring a more pragmatic voice to big decisions.

But those changes may not prove as dramatic as they seem, largely because of who will remain in the pilot's seat.

"Dilma is Dilma, and she's not going to change," said one senior official who has known her for years. "You'll see some (policy) modifications, but the essence will remain the same."   Continuación...