China interested in investing in agri-business in Brazil

4 August 2010

Sao Paulo, Brazil, 4 Aug – Chinese companies are preparing to invest in agri-business in Brazil, according to a report published Wednesday in Brazilian daily newspaper Estado de Sao Paulo.

The daily said that in April the China National Agricultural Development Group Corporation said it intended to buy land to produce soy and maize. In their initial contacts, the company’s negotiators showed interest in land in Central-West Brazil, particularly in the state of Goiás.

At the same time, representatives of the Chongqing Grain Group announced they planned to apply US$300 million in the acquisition of 100,000 hectares of land in the west of the state of Bahia, to produce soy for the Brazilian and Chinese markets.

A month later, Grupo Pallas International, made up of private investors as well as being part state-owned, revealed plans to buy between 200,000 and 250,000 hectares in the west of Bahia and possibly in the bush areas of Maranhão, Piauí and Tocantins, jointly known as Mapito.

Chinese companies have shown interest in several sectors, such as steel production, oil exploration, power distribution, mining and construction of the bullet train between Campinas, Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

Official estimates point to China investing up to US$12 billion in Brazil this year making it the biggest foreign direct investor in the country.

This influx of investment denotes a radical change in the way Chinese companies are approaching the Brazilian market as last year they invested just US$82 million and US$213 million between 2001 and 2009, according to figures from Brazil’s central bank. (macauhub)