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Japan's ethanol imports rise 17% on year to 61,681 cu m

Singapore — Japan's ethanol imports rose 17% year on year to 61,681 cu m in August, and were up 9.51% from July, Trade Statistics of Japan data released Thursday showed.

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Imports of undenatured ethanol fell 2.91% on the month to comprise 54,686 cu m of the August total, with Brazil the biggest supplier at 60.95% of the undenatured portion, followed by the US at 15.25%.

Brazil was also the biggest supplier of undenatured ethanol to Japan over January-August, accounting for 44.57% of the total 447,587 cu m, followed by Pakistan at 25.07%.

Japan's imports of denatured ethanol from Brazil for bio-ethyl tert-butyl ether production totaled 6,995 cu m in August, down 9.13% on year. There were no imports in July.

Japan has approved US corn-based ethanol as feedstock for ETBE production since April. Prior to that, only Brazilian cane-based ethanol was used.

Japanese refiners launched ETBE-blended gasoline in 2011 as part of Tokyo's commitment under the Kyoto Protocol to cut GHG emissions by 6% from 1990 levels over 2008-2012.

Japan's ethanol imports:
(Unit: cu m)
Product Aug-18 Jul-18 M-o-M change Jul-17 Y-o-y change
Denatured 6,995 0 NA 7,697 0.00%
Undenatured 54,686 56,323 -2.91% 44,621 22.56%
Total 61,681 56,323 9.51% 52,318 17.90%
Japan's undenatured ethanol imports:
(Unit: cu m)
Country Jan-Jul 2018 % of Total
Brazil 199487 44.57%
Pakistan 112198 25.07%
USA 71312 15.93%
Guatemala 43177 9.65%
Others 21413 4.78%
Total 447587
Source: Trade Statistics of Japan

-- Srijan Kanoi, srijan.kanoi@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Wendy Wells, newsdesk@spglobal.com

--Platts Global Alert--