Panama Canal inks deal to spur grain shipments from Brazil

by Eric Schroeder
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Panama Canal grain deal
Jorge L. Quijano, (right, holding document) administrator of the Panama Canal, signed a Memorandum of Understanding alongside Antonio Galvan, (left, holding document), president of Aprosoja, in Cuiabá, Brazil.
Photo courtesy of Panama Canal.
 
CUIABA, BRAZIL — The Panama Canal Authority, an autonomous agency of the government of Panama in charge of managing, operating and maintaining the Panama Canal, has reached an agreement with the Association of Soybean and Corn Producers of Mato Grosso (Aprosoja) that will promote the Panama Canal’s position as a route for grain shipments traveling from northern Brazil to ports accessed in the Pacific Ocean. The agreement will allow the Panama Canal and Aprosoja to conduct joint marketing activities and exchange market studies and information on trade flows to support modernization and improvement programs.

“The increased capacity afforded to us by the expanded Canal has had far-reaching positive impact across segments, and allows us to access new markets, which could include freight from ports such as those in northern Brazil,” said Administrator Jorge Luis Quijano in Brazil. “The Panama Canal is proud to partner with this organization and unleash an exciting opportunity for Brazilian exporters.”

As part of the agreement, the Panama Canal said it will look to promote the use of the Panamax locks for soy and corn grain transits originating in northern Brazil and traveling to markets in Asia.

“As the Panama Canal continues finding new and innovative ways to address the ever-changing needs of the global maritime community and international trade flows, this agreement with the Mato Grosso Association of Soybean and Corn Producers further strengthens the common goal of promoting regional trade growth,” Quijano said. “This agreement allows us to maintain our commitment to serving our dedicated customers in an informed, strategic and practiced way, and better positions the Canal in its role as the logistics hub of the Americas.”

The Panama Canal has signed Memorandum of Understandings with 36 commercial associations, ports and maritime organizations, many of which are in the United States. The agreement with Aprosoja is the first such deal between the Panama Canal and a Latin American country.

Founded in 2005, Aprosoja is a non-profit organization comprised of producers linked to the soybean and corn crops in Mato Grosso, Brazil.

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