Engie in talks with Petrobras on TAG gas pipeline

PARIS, May 15 (Reuters) - French gas and power group Engie said it is in talks with Brazilian state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA to buy Petrobras’ gas pipeline network Transportadora Associada de Gas (TAG).

Confirming a Reuters report, Engie chief executive Isabelle Kocher said on an analyst call that the company - which has major investments in Brazil hydro power - wants to diversify its Brazilian activities and had made an offer for the network.

“Apparently we presented the best offer in the bidding phase and we are currently negotiating the terms and conditions of a potential transaction,” Kocher said.

She added the talks are not based on exclusivity yet and are set to continue in coming months.

If Engie wins the competition, it would make the acquisition with partners, she said.

Engie is also starting to develop an energy services activity in the country.

Sources told Reuters earlier this month that in order to comply with rules established by a federal audit court, Petrobras will in June invite the other two groups that presented bids - led by Australia’s Macquarie Group and UAE’s Mubadala Development Co - to offer new bids for the pipeline, based on the contract negotiated with Engie. (Reporting by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)