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AMIS Market Monitor

last release: April 2018

Policy Developments

ACROSS THE BOARD

  • On 16 March, the Ministry of Agriculture of Brazil announced support amounting to BRL 384 million (USD 115.9 million) in favour of the Rural Insurance Premium Grant Programme. Of this total amount, at least BRL 115 million (USD 34.7 million) will be granted to contract policies for safflower, maize, wheat and other winter grains; BRL 175 million (USD 52.8 million) for summer grains; and BRL 21 million (USD 6.3 million) for other crops.
  • On 14 March, under the Growing Forward 2 programme, Canada announced a CAD 760 000 (USD 590 943) investment aimed at improving the certification of seed crops, assessing risks and opportunities facing the seed industry, and expanding global seed trade.
  • On 19 March, Republic of Korea announced its intention to restart trade talks with the Mercosur trade bloc in the first half of 2018 after meeting the Brazilian president, with a key focus on the bloc’s maize and soy exports to Republic of Korea.
  • As part of the upcoming Farm Bill discussions, the US House Agriculture Committee introduced a bill entitled the Grain Inspection Improvement Act (H.R. 5070) that allows grain handlers to reinstate previously-revoked grain inspection exceptions. Another bill, the Food for Peace Modernization Act (H.R. 5276), aims to reform food assistance programmes in a manner that prevents disincentives to local production and minimises market disruptions in responding to emergency and non-emergency food needs. For example, there will be more flexibility to use cash, vouchers, or locally-purchased food; monetization would be eliminated.

BIOFUELS

  • On 1 March, Brazil increased its biodiesel blending mandate from 8 percent to 10 percent. Moreover, on 14 March, the Ministry of Mines and Energy of Brazil introduced new regulations related to the recently enacted national biofuel policy, RenovaBio. According to the decree, reduction targets for greenhouse gas emissions are to be defined by 15 July 2018 and will come into effect from 24 July 2018 to 31 December 2028.
  • On 21 March, following a ruling by the European Court of Justice, the EU eliminated anti-dumping duties on biodiesel imports from 13 Argentinean and Indonesian suppliers. 
  • On 1 March, the European Commission approved a EUR 4.7 billion (USD 5.8 billion) support scheme for advanced biofuels in order to promote the use of renewable energy in Italy. The scheme will be implemented until 2022.
  • To absorb crude palm oil surplus, the Department of Energy Business of Thailand plans to increase the use of methyl ester (derived from crude palm oil) in automotive equipment from 7 percent to 10 percent by early 2019.

LOGISTICS/INFRASTRUCTURE 

  • On 7 March, Brazil launched 'Macrologística', a portal designed to facilitate agribusiness through data monitoring and dissemination on production areas, storage units, bottlenecks in value chains and investment opportunities to map out the optimum transport routes.