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Brazil’s energy major Eletrobras has plans to invest close to $17 billion over the next five years and is eager to grow through mergers and acquisitions.
That’s according to a security filing, cited by Reuters, in which the Brazilian company also said that investments in electricity generation would come in at around $3.6 billion over the period.
The company will also look at acquisition opportunities in low-carbon energy capacity and transmission, the filing also said, with the total number of deals eyed at up to 15. The expansion of the country’s transmission network is essential for the growth of its wind and solar capacity.
This capacity is concentrated in the northeast of Brazil, and in order to carry the electricity to the south and southwest, the government needs more transmission lines.
Last month, it launched a tender for over 6,000 km of new transmission lines to that end and plans two more tenders for transmission capacity.
Brazil is already a large renewable energy producer thanks to its substantial hydropower resources. Thanks to these, Brazil boasts 84% of its power generation coming from renewable sources, as the country is the second-largest hydropower producer after the United States. Yet it also has ambitions in wind, solar, and hydrogen.
Eletrobras is the largest power utility in Latin America. The state-owned company was privatized a year ago by the Bolsonaro administration. The government issued new shares in the company and sold them, diluting its own stake in the company. The share sale generated $6.3 billion.
When President Lula da Silva came into office, his government tried to challenge the privatization. The Supreme Court is expected to throw out the challenge. Lula has spoken against the privatization of Eletrobras previously, calling it “erratic” and “almost banditry”, per a Reuters report.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com