Agribusiness giant Bunge Global and Zen-Noh Grain Corp – the US subsidiary of Japan’s Zen-Noh Group – have agreed through a joint venture to buy a 50% stake in a grain terminal at the Port of Santos in Brazil, World Grain reports.

The partners would hold an equal stake in the 135,000 tonne capacity XXXIX grain terminal in the south of the country, according to the 30 May report, based on a Reuters articles citing a securities filing.

The companies had acquired the terminal from Brazilian rail operator Rumo for BRL 600M (US$115.3M), with the deal subject to regulatory approval.

Brazilian food and fuel processor Caramuru Alimentos, one of the country's largest grain crushing companies, would continue to hold the remaining 50% of the terminal, World Grain wrote.

“With this deal, the companies expect to obtain larger logistical flexibility in a key export corridor in Brazil,” Bunge and Zen-Noh were quoted as saying.

Located on São Paulo state’s coastline, the Port of Santos is the largest in Latin America connecting more than 600 ports in 125 countries. It is also the most important foreign trade route in Brazil, with almost 27% of the country’s trade balance (US$112.3bn) passing through the port, according to Santos Port Authority.

The Port of Santos handles around 30% of the country’s total soyabean exports, followed by the ports of Paranagua and Rio Grande.

Rumo, a subsidiary of Cosan, provides transportation for agricultural commodities, fuels, fertilisers, corn, wheat, rice, soyabeans, sugar and industrialised products. It manages approximately 14,000km of railways in the states of Paraná, Santa Catarina, Rio Grande do Sul, São Paulo, Mato Grosso do Sul, Mato Grosso, Minas Gerais, Goiás and Tocantins. The company has 1,400 locomotives and 35,000 railway wagons and operates nine trans-shipment terminals and six port terminals in the main Brazilian ports.

In March, Rumo and supply chain solutions provider DP World also reached an agreement to build a new port terminal for grains and fertilisers at the Port of Santos.

The project, which would be installed at DP World’s private-use terminal on the port’s left bank, would boost the port’s handling capacity by 9M tonnes of grains and 3.5M tonnes of fertilisers, DP World were quoted as saying.