The president of Petrobras, José Sérgio Gabrielli, says that Brazil will respect Bolivia’s decision to control refineries and increase taxes, but will not accept any price increases on the gas being exported to Brazil.
Gabrielli explained that the laws covering production, refining and distribution of oil and gas are the laws of Bolivia and must be obeyed.
However, he went on, Brazil’s contract for the export of Bolivian natural gas was drawn up as part of an international agreement under the jurisdiction of an arbitration court in New York.
Any changes in the export contract must be through mutual agreement, or, in the case of a disagreement, a ruling by the US court, declared Gabrielli.
"We have not been formally informed of any price changes. But we expect that to happen. If it does, our position, which is public knowledge, is against price increases.
"We are absolutely sure of ourselves on this, our position is definitely within the bounds of the contractual relationship established in 1996," said Gabrielli.
When Petrobras is officially informed that Bolivia wants a price increase on the natural gas that is exported to Brazil, the company will have 45 days to negotiate an agreement. If an agreement is not reached, then the case goes to the New York Arbitration Court.