Brazil's Chamber of Foreign Trade, CAMEX, last Wednesday postponed until June a decision on whether to impose tariffs on ethanol imports from the US.  

The delay is to allow another CAMEX subgroup, the Technical Group on Temporary Alterations to the Common Foreign Tariff of Mercosur, to assess the proposal, US trade groups said as they praised the postponement.

"We commend the Executive Committee of CAMEX (GECEX) for deciding to postpone the chamber’s proceedings on the recent proposal from Brazilian sugarcane and ethanol producer associations to reinstate an ethanol import tariff in Brazil," the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Growth Energy and the US Grains Council said in a joint statement. The organisations added the issue requires "very thoughtful consideration" as it will impact Brazilian consumers and commodity markets around the world.

"We strongly believe that re-imposing an import tariff on U.S. ethanol would only lead to increased fuel prices, and endanger the positive and hard-won cooperative trade relationship between our two countries concerning the production, use and global trade in ethanol," they said.

Brazil's sugarcane industry association Unica has been calling for a 16% tariff, while producers in northeastern Brazil want a higher levy of 20%.

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