24 February 2009 16:58 [Source: ICIS news]
SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS news)--The US tariff on ethanol imports was a key factor in the ability of the biofuels industry to contribute to the US economy, a Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) official said on Tuesday.
The organisation would continue to try to protect existing jobs and create new ones by defending the tariff, RFA chairman Christopher Standlee told the National Ethanol Conference in San Antonio.
The RFA estimates that the industry created 256,000 jobs in the US in 2008, taking the total above 500,000.
The US levies a 54 cents/gal tax on imported Brazilian ethanol, which the RFA claims is used to offset a tax credit the US gives for blending ethanol in gasoline.
Brazil strongly opposes the levy, and has threatened to challenge US support for the domestic ethanol industry at the World Trade Organization.
Standlee said that despite the unprecedented economic difficulties facing the industry, the RFA has been successful in the past year in pushing its legislative agenda and achieving victories on the regulatory front.
"You should be proud to call yourselves members," said Standlee, who is also executive vice president of Abengoa Bioenergy.
Bookmark Simon Robinson’s Big Biofuels Blog for some independent thinking on biofuels
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