Brazil will likely step down to become the world's second-largest sugar producer on low global sugar prices and higher profitability and strong demand for ethanol, according to a report by Brazilian consulting company JOB Economia e Planejamento.
Brazilian company FS Bioenergia inaugurated a corn ethanol plant, the first in the country, to produce 210 million liters year. The plant was built by a joint venture between the local agro-company Fiagril and US-based Summit Agricultural Group with investments of BRL 450 million (US$ 141.1m), said the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Farming.
The Brazilian government has come to the rescue of the sugar-ethanol industry announcing that as of next May first the mandatory content of ethanol in gasoline will increase from 20% to 25%, taxes on the sugar-cane fuel will be eliminated and there will be soft loans to keep expansion going.
Brazil's trade ministry said the country's exports of corn and ethanol rose in October as foreign buyers turned to Brazil after the worst drought in 50 years ravaged US crops.