SAO PAULO, April 26 Cargill Inc is part of a
group of grain trading companies analyzing whether to build
Brazil's Ferrogrão railway, which should require investments of
up to 15 billion reais ($4.8 billion), O Estado de S. Paulo
newspaper reported on Wednesday.
Luiz Pretti, Cargill's chief executive officer in Brazil,
told Estado in an interview that members of the consortium that
could participate in the Ferrogrão project are in touch with the
government to discuss its feasibility.
Ferrogrão railway will allow Brazilian grains to be shipped
out of ports in the North of the country, Estado said. Pretti
reiterated Cargill's plans to invest up to $127 million in the
country this year to grow operations amid a bumper crop.
Cargill press representatives were not immediately available
to confirm the content of Pretti's comments to Estado.
The Brazilian unit of U.S.-based Cargill invested 3.8
billion reais in the country over the past six years, O Estado
wrote, adding Latin America's largest economy is Cargill's
second most important market.
According to results published in O Estado's Wednesday
edition, Cargill's consolidated net income jumped 61 percent to
670 million reais last year as Brazil's agribusiness segment
"continued to expand and has been, for the most part, resilient
to economic challenges."
Cargill originated, processed and traded 24 million tonnes
of products in 2016 and destined 75 percent to export markets,
it said. Net revenues were virtually stable at 32.3 billion
reais last year.
Earlier in April, Brazil's agricultural statistics agency
Conab raised the estimate for the country's 2016/2017 soybean
crop for a fourth time. The agency also rose corn output
forecasts in the season.
"It is an important long-term project, but it hinges on the
conclusion" of a nearby highway, Estado quoted Pretti as saying
($1 = 3.1476 reais)
(Reporting by Ana Mano; Editing by Bernard Orr)