(Adds comments and background on divestment of shares)
By Rodrigo Viga
RIO DE JANEIRO, Dec 18 (Reuters) - Brazil’s state development bank BNDES forecasts profits of 6.6 billion reais to 8.6 billion reais ($1.57 billion-$2.05 billion) in 2022, with an overall credit portfolio of 421 billion reais to 490 billion reais, according to a presentation on Wednesday.
The bank’s executives said in a news conference on the bank’s plans for the coming years that it will invest heavily in renewable energy, natural gas distribution, railways and roadways, among other areas.
BNDES President Gustavo Montezano said it made no sense for the development bank to hold on to shares in companies such as Petrobras, JBS and Suzano, confirming that it will push ahead with divestment to reduce risk to levels closer to other international lending institutions.
Currently BNDES has a stock portfolio of about 120 billion reais, with shares in Petroleo Brasileiro SA, miner Vale SA, meatpacker JBS and pulp and paper company Suzano Papel e Celulose SA.
Montezano said the bank wants to finance an increase in Brazil’s renewable energy capacity by 2 GigaWatts through 2022.
BNDES plans to finance the building of 2,500 kms of railways and 5,000 kms of roads and the expansion of natural gas distribution by 1,600 kms through 2022, other executives said.
$1 = 4.1964 reais Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier Writing by Jake Spring Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Diane Craft