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Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association Stresses Need for Brazil's Government to Announce Ethanol Import Tariff Cut as Soon as Possible
Date:2/9/2010

SAO PAULO, Feb. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Today's announcement by the Brazilian Chamber of Foreign Trade (CAMEX) to postpone a decision to reduce Brazil's ethanol import duty from 20% to zero means it will take a bit longer for the move to be announced, but not for its impact to take effect once the decision is made. That's how the Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association (UNICA) views what it describes as little more than a "bureaucratic" delay.

According to UNICA President and CEO, Marcos Jank, the government should still make its announcement as soon as possible, even if the measure only becomes effective in July: "We are very encouraged by the statement from Brazil's Agriculture Minister, Reinhold Stephanes, who said after the meeting that it is 'highly probable' that the tariff on imported ethanol will be dropped as of July."

UNICA originally asked CAMEX to remove the import duty in a letter sent in October of last year. According to Jank, UNICA believes free trade is a two-way street and Brazil, as the largest producer of cane ethanol and largest exporter of ethanol in the world, with 60% of the global market, should lead by example. "We should eliminate barriers, which would then allow Brazil to pursue similar measures from countries that keep their markets heavily protected," he added.

The United States imposes two duties on ethanol imports: a 2.5% ad valorem tariff plus an additional "other duty or charge" of US$0.1427 per liter (US$0.54 per gallon). According to data from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), the combined d
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SOURCE Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association
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