UPDATE 1-Brazil's Petrobras will not sell distribution arm -board member
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SAO PAULO, March 31 (Reuters) - Petrobras, Brazil's state-run oil company, will not sell its fuel distribution arm as part of its ongoing asset sale plan, company board member Silvio Sinedino said on Tuesday.
In a live speech broadcast on Youtube, Sinedino said Aldemir Bendine, chief executive of the company, officially Petroleo Brasileiro SA, told a recent board meeting that BR Distribuidora would be excluded from the company's $13.7 billion asset sale plan.
Sinedino, who represents Petrobras workers' interests on the board and is one of three members not appointed by the government, said that in addition Petrobras is getting rid of third-party contractors to save costs.
"Petrobras is cutting many outsourced contracts, firing a lot of people," he said.
Sinedino also pointed to potential conflicts of interest on the company's next board, citing the nomination of Vale SA Chief Executive Murilo Ferreira as chairman and the selection of the president of Brazil's national development bank BNDES, Luciano Coutinho, as interim chairman.
"How can a creditor be president of the board? I think it's a clear conflict of interest," Sinedino said of Coutinho.
He said in some cases, Ferreira's confirmation would also represent a conflict of interest as Vale is a Petrobras business partner.
Vale, Brazil's largest diesel consumer, pays Petrobras about 1 billion reais ($300 million) a year to fuel its mines and railways. Meanwhile, Petrobras buys raw materials from Vale for its fertilizer plants. Continuación...