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Brazil utilities face up to 40% energy surpluses this year - minister

BRASILIA, May 5 (Reuters) - Brazilian utilities face having surplus energy this year of between 20% and 40% thanks to the sharp drop in consumption due to the coronavirus pandemic, Mines and Energy Minister Bento Albuquerque said on Tuesday, which could hit their bottom line.

Speaking in a live broadcast hosted by industry group Abdib, he also said that energy distributors say customer default rates have jumped to 12% from 3% over the last month. (Reporting by Luciano Costa Writing by Jamie McGeever)