Rules of agreement with IMF are detrimental to Eletrobrás's investments, says company president

07/10/2003 - 22h16

São Paulo, October 8, 2003 (Agência Brasil - ABr) - Eletrobrás foresees investments of R$ 4.2 billion in 2004, the president of the public enterprise, Luiz Pinguelli Rosa, informed yesterday (7). The bulk of these "company" resources will be spent for energy generation, Pinguelli Rosa stated, adding that work on the new turbine at Itaipu and the duplication of Tucuruí will be continued. Of the total, R$ 3.7 billion will go to the Eletrobrás Group and around R$ 399 million to companies taken over by the federal government.

Even so, he calls for greater autonomy to obtain resources and argues that, as collateral, he has the fact of "our being creditors to a debt on the order of twenty billion dollars, in twenty years," referring to investments in Itaipu. "This is a magnificent accounts receivable, and we have a capacity for indebtedness to lever investments," he said.

But, for this to come about, it is necessary to get out from under the IMF rules, to abandon "all this nonsense I call left-over neoliberal garbage, which shackles Eletrobrás." The proposal to strengthen the company on the market, announced Monday (6) by the Minister of Mines and Energy, Dilma Rousseff, in Pinguelli's assessment, "gives Eletrobrás a boost, as was the case with Petrobras." The president of Eletrobrás took part in a seminar on electric energy, in São Paulo.

In the case of investments by consortiums integrated with companies in the Eletrobrás Group that ended up with four transmission line lots in the auction held in September, Pinguelli said that the largest part of the investments will be financed by the National Economic and Social Development Bank (BNDES), "according to the rules of the auction."

As for the proposal that is being studied by the federal government, to fragment Eletrobrás's capital through the issue of stocks and bonds, in Pinguelli's view it would be "a stoked up Eletrobrás," which could reach R$ 7.5 billion in investments, but this, he said, is "a matter for the government." (DAS)