UPDATE 1-Petrobras board member lashes out at gov't over oil plan

jueves 26 de junio de 2014 18:46 GYT

(Adds comment from Sinedino, third board member, share price, background)

By Jeb Blount

RIO DE JANEIRO, June 26 (Reuters) - A board member of Brazil's state-run Petrobras lashed out at the government on Thursday and said he may ask the country's securities regulator to sanction the oil company for failing to inform him and other board members of a 15 billion real ($6.8 billion) oil-rights purchase plan.

Board members Silvio Sinedino and Mauro Cunha told Reuters on Thursday that they knew nothing of a government plan to sell as much as 15.2 billion barrels of offshore oil rights to Petroleo Brasileiro SA, as Petrobras is formally known, until it was announced in a securities filing on Tuesday.

Sinedino said he is considering a complaint to securities regulator CVM because of the government's heavy hand in the company's affairs under President Dilma Rousseff. On her watch, Petrobras has become the world's most indebted and least-profitable major oil company.

"I'm not against buying the oil, I'm just not sure the terms are a good deal," Sinedino said. "The government has been doing everything it can to suck money out of Petrobras to balance its own books."

A senior government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters that government officials who drafted the plan felt they had no need to inform the Petrobras board.

Petrobras shares have slipped 5.4 percent since the decision. A Petrobras spokeswoman declined a request for comment.

While the government owns a majority of voting shares, non-government investors own most of the company's capital, but most of that is made up of non-voting preferred shares.   Continuación...