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JBS lobbying to preserve Delta’s government contracts

Joesley Batista, of the JBS-Friboi group, is scouring Brasilia for support its acquisition of Delta, which has been hit by a scandal being investigated in Brazil’s parliament. He wants to prevent Delta being declared disreputable by the Comptroller General after the company was suspected of involvement with of businessman Carlinhos Cachoeira. This would prevent Delta from signing contracts with the government.

After getting messages from President Dilma Rousseff denying government support for the acquisition of Delta, a company that has been in receipt of most federal funds since 2007, Batista began to operate behind the scenes. In recent days he has met with ministers, members of the Parliamentary Investigative Committee (CPI) and the vice president, Michel Temer. He has also contacted governors with whom the company has contracts and unions, claiming that ruling against Delta would cost more than 30,000 jobs.

In conversations with representatives of Brazil’s president, Batista has stressed that he has not yet bought Delta, and that he will only do so in the deal is financially viable. Batista has also told the vice president and ministers, among them José Eduardo Cardozo (Justice) and Fernando Pimentel (Development), that statements made by his brother, José Batista Jr., were "unfortunate."

Information provided by Folha de S. Paulo

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