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Brazil tariff on U.S. ethanol would have chilling impact


Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president Bob Dinneen says if Brazil imposes tariffs on U.S. ethanol, it would have a chilling impact.

“We would be scrambling to find new markets. Prices here would likely go down as a result. And there would be a negative impact on farmers (and) rural communities.”

He tells Brownfield the proposed 17 percent tariff on all imported ethanol would ultimately do most harm to the citizens of Brazil because it would drive up their fuel prices.

Dinneen says the Brazilian Government’s full Cabinet is expected to make a decision later today (Tuesday) after two postponements.

“And frankly, we have viewed each postponement thus far as a good sign because it means they truly are studying it. (The Brazilian government) is trying to figure out what the impact on Brazil would be. What the impact on their trade relations with the United States might be.”

Dinneen says he views the tariff threat as a protectionist strategy promoted by Brazil’s Minister of Agriculture in hopes of benefiting Brazilian sugarcane producers.

Brazil—second to the U.S. in world ethanol production—derives its renewable fuel from sugarcane.