RIO DE JANEIRO Nov 1 Brazil's Petrobras failed
to get its third-quarter earnings approved by
PriceWaterhouseCoopers as the auditing firm demanded wider
investigation into a corruption scandal plaguing the state-run
oil company, newspaper O Estado de S.Paulo said on Saturday.
Directors of Petroleo Brasileiro SA, as the oil
firm is formally known, halted a Friday board meeting before
making any decisions and rescheduled it for Tuesday, a source
told Reuters without providing details. A possible fuel price
increase was expected to be discussed on Friday.
Estado reported that Petrobras' board, which is presided by
Finance Minister Guido Mantega, spent the meeting discussing how
to handle PwC's demands for more investigation into an alleged
corruption scheme uncovered by Brazil's federal police.
PriceWaterhouseCoopers, which has been auditing Petrobras'
financial statements since 2012, refused to sign off on the
firm's third-quarter earnings and threatened to take the case to
U.S. authorities, Estado said. Petrobras' shares are listed on
several different exchanges, including Sao Paulo's BM&FBovespa
and the New York Stock Exchange.
PwC's representatives did not immediately respond to a
request for comment from Reuters. To Estado, the auditing
company said it would not make comments on its clients.
Petrobras' representatives were not immediately available to
Brazil's federal police has been investigating a scam that
allegedly received kickbacks from Petrobras contractors and
funneled funds to President Dilma Rousseff's Workers Party and
its allies in Congress.
The allegations were made in plea bargain statements made by
former Petrobras executive Paulo Roberto Costa and a
black-market money dealer called Alberto Youssef, who were
arrested in March in a money laundering investigation.
Petrobras announced last week it was hiring two law firms to
independently investigate the corruption allegations, which were
a key theme in the run-up to the presidential election won by
Rousseff last weekend.
(Reporting by Walter Brandimarte and Marta Nogueira; Editing by