WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — The Brazilian government amended the recent Aug. 31 rule that raised the quote on U.S. ethanol imports under the tariff rate quota (TRQ) from 600 million liters per year to nearly 750 million liters per year. The TRQ regulates the threshold of ethanol that can be imported into Brazil without triggering a 20% tariff.

The U.S. Grains Council (USGC), Growth Energy, and Renewable Fuels Association believe this is a step backwards in Brazilian government claims that it is an advocate of free markets.

“The decision by Brazil to place seasonal restrictions on its tariff rate quota for U.S. ethanol is disappointing and puts up additional roadblocks to free trade, hurting consumers and our respective ethanol industries,” the three associations said in a group statement. “For more than 15 years, Brazilian ethanol industry leaders lobbied the U.S. government to drop the tax on imported ethanol.”

The associations urged both the U.S. and Brazilian government to “work together and create a truly global free market for ethanol.”

“The action by Brazil this week to impose seasonal restrictions on the sale of ethanol does not create a case study in leading by example, but rather the opposite — it is up-ending real opportunities for free trade,” the associations said.