TCU locks Ceitec liquidation but ministers’ votes cause

By four votes to three, the Federal Court of Accounts (TCU) ordered the Bolsonaro government to suspend the liquidation of Ceitec, the National Center for Advanced Electronic Technology, in Porto Alegre.

In the session this Wednesday (1), the TCU determined that the Ministry of Economy provide more information about its decision to include Ceitec in the list of companies to be privatized.

The Ministry of Economy will have 60 days to submit to the court the elements capable of demonstrating that the public interest is being served in the liquidation of the company.

On Thursday (2), through a statement, the Association of Ceitec Employees (ACCeitec) applauded the decision but showed some fear.

Fear is due to the behavior of some ministers of the court who did not base their votes on technical data prepared by the TCU’s own technical team. They preferred to vote based on other information and accusing Ceitec – the only Latin American company that completely manufactures silicon chips – of not producing “nothing relevant”.

“It’s not a bakery or grocery store”

The reviewer of the process, Minister Vital do Rêgo said that the reasons that led to the liquidation of Ceitec “cannot be sustained, lacking further justification.” He called “fragile” the justifications presented by the ministry managed by Paulo Guedes.

It understands that the reasons alleged by Planalto are supported “in analyzes that did not consider relevant losses and expenditures of public resources as immediate consequences of this line of action”. The rapporteur, Minister Walton Rodrigues, voted in the opposite direction, claiming that the company, throughout its existence, did not demonstrate that it had the resources to pay its bills.

“CPI of the Pandemic should investigate”

“Ceitec is a healthy company that increases its revenues every year. It has a maturation curve similar to that of companies in the sector. It could not be compared to a bakery or grocery store”, retort the employees.

“It is necessary to talk about the Lab On Chip patents, devices for early detection of diseases, which could be used to control the covid pandemic”, emphasizes the document. These are patents developed by the factory’s researchers, who have already been dismissed. “The CPI of the Pandemic should investigate why the government prefers to import tests than manufacture on national soil”, suggests the note.

passport chip

ACCeitec also recalls that the ongoing research and development at the state-owned company could bring “greater security for the data of Brazilian citizens, as is the case with the passport chip”.

It emphasizes that, today, the Mint is importing a more expensive solution and with fewer requirements than that item manufactured in the South. In addition, Ceitec has products that can be used to control dengue and early detect cancer.

Since taking office, Bolsonaro wants to liquidate Ceitec, inaugurated in 2010 during Lula’s government. The decision to end the only Latin American company that produces chips entirely with silicon was stamped in a presidential decree in December 2020. Since then, 95 technicians have been fired.

The settlement was handed over to the Navy officer, Abílio Eustáquio de Andrade Neto. He has practice in the field. Before, he threw the last shovel of earth over Casemg, the Minas Gerais State Warehouse and Silos Company.

Source: BdF Rio Grande do Sul

Edition: Marcelo Ferreira

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