UK trade minister lobbied Brazil on behalf of oil giants

From The Guardian: The Tory government successfully lobbied Brazil on behalf of BP and Shell to address the oil giants’ concerns over Brazilian taxation, environmental regulation and rules on using local firms, government documents reveal.

Greenpeace accused the department of acting as a “lobbying arm of the fossil fuel industry”.

Rebecca Newsom, senior political adviser at Greenpeace, said: “This is a double embarrassment for the UK government. Liam Fox’s trade minister has been lobbying the Brazilian government over a huge oil project that would undermine the climate efforts Britain made at the UN summit in Bonn.

“If that wasn’t bad enough, Fox’s department tried to cover it up and hide its actions from the public, but failed comically.”

The document also reveals that the UK pressured Brazil to relax its requirements for oil and gas operators to use a certain amount of Brazilian staff and supply chain companies.

The UK government has come under fire in the past for providing hundreds of millions of pounds of support for Brazil’s scandal-hit state oil firm Petrobras via the UK’s credit export agency.

The UK’s continued oil lobbying efforts in Brazil emerged days after British ministers were touting the UK’s leadership on cutting carbon emissions at international climate talks in Bonn.

[Read full article on Guardian website…]

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