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US ethanol producers eyes Kenya

by Grace Kisembo

Kenya’s pro-ethanol policies are providing the foundation for ethanol use in the country, offering potential demand for US ethanol imports.

Brian Healy, U.S. Grains Council (USGC) Manager of Ethanol Export Market Development  said opportunities for U.S. ethanol do exist in Kenya and other African markets.”

“Kenya, which has had an ethanol mandate since 2010, is currently not blending ethanol into their fuel due to infrastructure constraints related to refining and blending as well as limited expansion in feedstock production,” Healy said.

Recently Healy travelled to Kenya to engage with senior agricultural, energy and environmental ministry officials to learn more about ethanol production, use and trade across the region.

Healy said the Council is working to identify new market opportunities for U.S. ethanol in Africa, including promoting the development of pro-ethanol policies throughout the region and providing production and market information on the value of U.S. ethanol.

While many African countries have opportunities to expand their own domestic feedstock production, U.S. ethanol is already making its way to these markets via the Persian Gulf, where greater refining capacity exists.

According to a Council-commissioned study, U.S. ethanol exports to the United Arab Emirates are being blended into gasoline and shipped to East African markets.

According to US the use of ethanol supports African countries in achieving goals related to reducing environmental pollution and improving air quality for human health in addition to providing economic value as an octane enhancer.

These important components form the foundation of the Council’s global ethanol market development engagements and programs.

The Council is working hard towards establishing the United States as a reliable and affordable source of ethanol.

“We are broadening our outreach by identifying and analyzing potential new markets and developing strategies tailored to the culture and conditions of each market,” Healy said.

“At the same time, we are committed to our established markets in this truly global engagement.”

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