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Petrobras finished 2013 with net profits of R$ 23.6 billion, reporting a growth of 11% in comparison with the previous year. During the same period, other large oil companies saw their profitability decline considerably. Profits for Exxon, for example, fell 16% from 2012 to 2013; Chevron saw its profits decline by 18.2%; and Shell by 35% this result is even more significant when taken to account the volume of investments that Petrobras is making with the exploration of the pre-salt and in the construction of new refineries.
• The largest company in Brazil
In 2013, Petrobras invested R$ 104.41 billion (an increase of 24% compared to 2012). The development of technology for the production of petroleum in deep and ultradeep waters was achieved gradually over the years, but the restructuring of the company – previously neglected by the neoliberals – and the acceleration of investments in the Lula and Dilma administrations helped Brazil to become a world leader in underwater exploration. In 2005, the company arrived at ultradeep waters and set a Brazilian record for depth in drilling: 6915 m below the surface of the ocean, in the Santos basin. This is the technology that today allows Brazil to conquer the pre-salt.
Petrobras's is Brazil’s largest company in terms of market value, with a presence in 25 countries. In 2010, in the process of capitalizing of the company, Petrobras entered with an offering of shares on the São Paulo Stock exchange (Bovespa), that was the largest in history up to that time, bringing in almost R $120 billion. Petrobras is a complete energy company, operating in the following sectors: exploration and production, refining, sales, transportation, petrochemicals, distribution of derivatives, natural gas, electric power, chemical gas and biofuels.
There are 573,200 shareholders, more than 86,000 employees and proven reserves of 16.57 billion barrels of petroleum or gas. Petrobras has 135 platforms and has a fleet of 237 ships (60 owned by the company). It also invests in biofuels, holding shares in nine ethanol refineries and five biodiesel plants, and produces electric power in 26 thermoelectric plants, four wind energy plants and two small hydroelectric plants.
• Petrobras at 60: This story was inspired by you
The discussion of the ways to explore the petroleum deposits in Brazil's national territory was a watershed in politics in the decades from 1940 to 1960. On the one hand, the nationalists argued that Brazil’s reserves, recently confirmed, should be developed by Brazilian companies to aid in the development of Brazil. On the other hand, the arguments from the political right held that only foreign companies had the technical ability to fully develop our reserves.
This impasse was represented in the Constitution of 1946, which failed to take a position on the issue and passed it along in the form of a complementary law. Two years later, then president Eurico Gaspar Dutra sent to the Congress a proposed law permitting the development of Brazil's wealth by private companies and foreign companies. That was when the “The Oil Is Ours!” campaign began - headed by intellectuals like writer Monteiro Lobato, who argued in favor of a state monopoly.
The people mobilized, took to the streets and blocked the Dutra project. On October 3, 1953, Getúlio Vargas signed proposed law number 2004 into law, creating Petrobras.
The debate began again with the pre-salt. On the one hand the government of Lula and Dilma established the shared production regime that guaranteed exploration of the pre-salt would be subordinate to an industrial and technological development project for Brazil. On the other hand, the opposition, that dreamed of a return to the old model of large profits for foreign companies and the importation of ships and platforms, generating income and employment overseas.
• Our energy is great enough to overcome any challenge