‘Father of Ethanol’, Mario Garnero Cheers US Decision to Lift Tariffs on Brazilian Sugarcane Biofuels
SAO PAULO, Jan. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Mario Garnero, Chairman of Brasilinvest, Brazil’s pioneer merchant bank, stated during a private conference with investors in Paris that the recent decision by US lawmakers not to renew import tariffs that for over 3 decades protected corn ethanol from Brazilian competition is a “milestone of historical proportions to the good of the two largest economies in the Hemisphere. It clears the way to a higher level of trade between the US and Brazil. And is a firm step towards commoditizing ethanol — a mighty push for greener energy in all quarters.”
Garnero’s comments to investors emphasize Brazil’s performance in biofuels, offshore and deep-water oil reserves, as a launch pad to the country’s new position in global affairs. Brazil has been recently called by Garnero a “Powerhouse Nation”, a concept he champions to replace the outdated notion of the country as simply an “emerging market.”
The liberalization of Brazilian ethanol is a remarkable personal victory for Mario Garnero. An early-adopter of biofuels since he chaired Brazil’s Automakers Association in the 1980s, Garnero paved the way for auto producers to turn out ethanol fueled vehicles when the country experienced harsh oil shortages.
He then initiated a global advocacy for the green economy. “I do it out of an environmental conviction but also because Brazil carries strong competitive advantages in these fields.”
Garnero went so far as the US Congress on a round of talks with Senators John Glenn and Charles Percy in the early 80s. “I think we left a mark at US Congressmen on how closer interaction in biofuels would benefit both nations. I am thrilled to see this decades-long work bear fruit”.
Four out of five cars in Brazil’s today function on flex-fuel. Garnero believes Brazil must now become more ambitious in the innovation front so as to consolidate its rank as an energy purveyor to the world. “We will only reach that level if biotechnology is brought to the fore of Brazil’s R&D efforts and consequently bulk up Brazil’s technological capacities.”
2012 will see Garnero enlarging his role as a global voice for biofuels. He is to chair green economy conferences in Shanghai, Beijing, Cambridge (at the MIT) and a series of civil society symposia leading to the United Nations Rio+20 Conference in Rio de Janeiro late June.
SOURCE Forum das Americas