Argentina agrees deal to resume biodiesel exports to EU

Argentina and the EU have reached an agreement to end their long-running trade dispute over exports of biodiesel from the South American country to the bloc, the Argentine Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on 30 January.

The deal established price and volume limits to be announced next month, the ministry said.

Two weeks earlier on 14 January, the European Commission (EC) had announced that it was willing to accept a deal with Argentine biodiesel producers, allowing them to avoid proposed anti-subsidy duties of 25-33.4% that were due to come into force on 28 February, Euractiv said.

“To find a solution to the commercial dispute, the Argentine Chamber of Biofuels (CARBIO), with the support of the national government, offered a price and volume commitment to allow the restart of exports,” CARBIO said.

A statement from the foreign ministry said it expected Europe to ratify and settle on the details of the agreement in the days ahead.

Euractiv said that the deal could help bolster Argentina’s soyabean and biodiesel sector.

The European Biodiesel Board (EBB) welcomed the deal, saying it showed the EU recognised that Argentine export taxes had unfairly distorted the international market.

Under the agreement, Argentine exporters would be allowed to export up to about 1.2M tonnes/year of biodiesel without paying duties, the EBB said.

The EC began investigating Argentine and Indonesian biodiesel imports in 2012 and imposed anti-dumping duties in 2013, but then had to remove most of them at the end of September 2017 after challenges made at the World Trade Organization and the European Court of Justice. The EBB then requested a further investigation into the countries’ alleged subsidies of their biodiesel industries. The EC had been due to give a final decision next month.