Brazil ethanol group to share know-how with Colombia

01 July 2009 22:25  [Source: ICIS news]

PIRACICABA, BRAZIL (ICIS news)--Brazilian ethanol group APLA said on Wednesday it would help Colombia boost its ethanol production to help the country meet its renewable fuel targets.

The group plans to assist Colombia with greenfield projects in the Meta Department, said APLA executive secretary Flavio Castellar.

Colombia is divided into 32 departments, which are similar to states in the US.

Meta has some 1m ha (2m acres) of land that can be used to grow sugarcane for ethanol, according to Meta state governor Dario Sanchez.

APLA would initially assist in the development of some 200,000 ha, Castellar said on the sidelines of the SIMTEC conference in Piracicaba, Sao Paulo.

Financial details were not yet available, he said.

Sanchez and APLA are expected to formally sign the agreement at SIMTEC later this week.

Colombia produces 1m litres/day of ethanol, which is short of the 1.7m litres/day it needs to meet a 10% mandate currently in place, Castellar said.

That mandate will jump to 85% by 2012, according to Sanchez.

Castellar said Colombia would need to produce 14m litres/day of ethanol to meet that target.

It is a very aggressive target to be met in such a short period, he said.

APLA members include five research institutes and 80 Brazilian companies involved in the design, construction and operation of sugarcane ethanol mills.

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By: William Lemos
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