Brazilian congress overturns presidential veto of part of new oil law

SAO PAULO – Brazil’s congress has overridden the presidential veto of part of a new law that gives a greater share of royalty revenues from the country’s vast oil fields to non-producing states.

The new law aims to share oil royalties more evenly among Brazil’s 27 states instead of favouring top oil producers such as the states of Rio de Janiero, Espirito Santo and Sao Paulo.

Congress approved the law late last year but President Dilma Rousseff vetoed the part that decreased the percentage of petroleum royalties going to producing states from 26.25 per cent to 20 per cent. Non-producing states that now receive 7 per cent are to see their share increase to 21 per cent.

Rio de Janeiro state officials have said a drop in oil revenues could hurt their preparations for the 2016 Olympics.