Petrobras Is Helping Transocean Fight Brazil Court Order

Petroleo Brasileiro SA (PETR4), Brazil’s largest company by market value, is working with Transocean Ltd. to overturn a court order to suspend the drilling company’s operations in the country.

Petrobras’s “legal team is working with Transocean,” Jose Formigli, the head of exploration and production at Petrobras, told reporters in Rio de Janeiro today. “Transocean provides eight drilling rigs to Petrobras and they are important.”

A Brazilian appeals court July 31 ordered Transocean and Chevron Corp. (CVX) to suspend operations in Brazil as part of an investigation into two oil spills in Chevron’s offshore Frade field, in which Petrobras is a partner. Transocean is the owner of the rig used by Chevron when the first, 300 barrel spill occurred in November. The second spill occurred in March.

The appeals court gave Vernier, Switzerland-based Transocean and San Ramon, California-based Chevron 30 days to suspend their operations. The suspensions will last until the federal prosecutor’s office, the oil regulator and environmental agencies complete investigations into the spills, the court said in its ruling.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rodrigo Orihuela in Rio de Janeiro at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Attwood at

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