Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff Wednesday issued a decree to expropriate land in Rio de Janeiro state for pipelines to be built for Petrobras' Comperj refinery and petrochemicals project near Rio de Janeiro, which is currently under construction, as per Platts. According to the decree in Brazil's Official Gazette, the land for the pipeline between Comperj and Petrobras' Duque de Caxias Refinery totals nearly 3 million square meters (741 acres). The decree noted that it "does not relieve Petrobras from obtaining prior licensing and from the enforcement of obligations to environmental groups and other public administration bodies."
Work on the refinery and petrochemicals project was halted for three days last week after a judge ruled it should have federal rather that state licenses. A court injunction issued last Friday allowed construction to restart.
Comperj is one of four refineries Petrobras is planning to build to increase its capacity to process crude to meet rising domestic demand for fuels. Importing fuel products at global market rates to supply the domestic market has been a leading reason for the company's recent loss-making, due to a government policy of keeping price caps on consumer fuel to minimize inflation. Comperj's first phase is due to start operation in April 2015 with a throughput capacity 165,000 bpd. A second phase will eventually take capacity to 300,000 bpd.