Brazilian state-controlled oil giant Petrobras said it planned to adopt a new fuel-pricing system this year that would feature automatic adjustments, allowing the company to produce better financial forecasts and capitalize on the massive investments it plans over the next few years.

"The new methodology seeks to align (domestic) prices (with those abroad) so the company can have the necessary muscle to execute its business plan," Petrobras CFO Almir Barbassa said.

Petrobras partly blamed the drop in third-quarter profits it reported last week on the "increase in the mismatch in the prices of derivatives" sold in Brazil.

The situation was produced by a combination of the rise of oil prices on the international market and the Brazilian real's depreciation against the dollar.

The new pricing methodology is expected to be made public following the Nov. 22 Petrobras board meeting.

"The important thing is that (the new methodology) will give us greater forecasting power over cash flow and the ability to finance our investments," Barbassa said.

Petrobras needs positive cash flow to pay for its ambitious 2013-2017 investment plan, the executive said.

The company plans $236.7 billion in investments to boost daily production from 2 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2012 to 2.5 million bpd in 2016, 2.75 million bpd in 2017 and 4.2 million bpd by 2020. EFE