China’s COFCO International is planning to build a 1-2km pipeline to transport its biodiesel to Brazil’s Rondonópolis rail terminal area, Reuters reports.

Construction was set to begin this year and the pipeline was expected to be operational some time in 2020, the 24 September report said.

COFCO is the overseas agriculture business platform for COFCO Corporation, China's largest food and agriculture company.

It sources and produces, stores and handles, processes, trades and transports grains, oilseeds and sugar around the world. It has 30M tonnes of port capacity, 24M tonnes of processing capacity and 2.2M tonnes of inland storage.

COFCO said 60% of its global assets were in the world’s number one exporting region of South America.

Reuters said COFCO had boosted its biodiesel production in Mato Grosso state by 42% to 306M litres/year. Currently, it moved its biodiesel by truck or rail.

Earlier in August, COFCO chairman Johnny Chi said the company was looking at investments such as new warehouses and improving transportation systems in Brazil as the business environment was likely to improve after the approval of economic reforms.

China was Brazil’s largest trading partner and the top buyer of Brazilian commodities, according to a Reuters report on 5 August.

COFCO was a major soyabean and corn trader in the country, as well as a large producer of sugar and ethanol. It sharply increased the amount of soyabeans it sourced in Brazil to almost 11M tonnes last year, nearly 20% more than in 2017, largely because of China’s trade dispute with the USA, Reuters said.

Chi said COFCO expected to buy 5% more Brazilian soyabeans every year for the next five years.