July 16, 2018 / 1:26 PM / a year ago

Sao Paulo prepares lawsuit that could help highway operators: paper

SAO PAULO, July 16 (Reuters) - The Brazilian state of Sao Paulo is preparing to sue the federal government for its decision to lower highway toll prices in the state in response to a truckers' strike, a legal action that could help major highway concessionaires in Brazil who were hurt by the federal government's move.

Sao Paulo Governor Márcio França said in an interview with newspaper Valor Economico published on Monday that the state was preparing a suit in federal court to force the federal government to compensate the state and highway concessionaires.

In May, truckers across Brazil blocked highways, citing high fuel and toll costs, among other issues. The federal government, in response, cut toll costs.

França, governor of Brazil's biggest state, said at the time the reduction would cut revenue from tolls by 50 million reais ($13 million) per month.

"We're preparing the suit," França was quoted as saying by Valor. "We're going to try to convince the court that it wasn't correct with the concessionaires, nor with the state."

Shares in concessionaires CCR SA were up 1.5 percent and Ecorodovias Infraestrutura e Logistica SA was trading up 0.9 percent at opening, while Brazil's benchmark Bovespa was flat.

Representatives for the state government did not immediately respond to a request to confirm the accuracy of the article.

($1 = 3.85 reais)

Reporting by Gram Slattery Editing by Frances Kerry

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