According to Brazil’s ambassador in Washington, Roberto Abdenur, what Brazil and the US need to do is move forward on discussions regarding the use of ethanol.
Abdenur points out that the US now has barriers on imports of ethanol from Brazil, which must be removed. Then, says the ambassador, the two countries should work together to make ethanol a global energy product.
Abdenur says the measures would strengthen bilateral trade and reduce the impact of high petroleum prices.
Abdenur announced that an informal consultation Brazil-US group had been formed to lobby the US congress seeking to change its present protectionist position regarding Brazilian sugarcane-based ethanol.
At the moment, the US charges an importation surtax on ethanol of 2.5% per gallon, plus a US$ 0.54 tax (per gallon).
Abdenur says the US and Brazil produce 70% of the world’s ethanol (the US product is mostly corn-based). He adds ethanol could alleviate fuel problems around the world.
"Ethanol needs to be seen less as a commodity and more as a solution to the planet’s energy problems," declared the ambassador.