After Snatching Up U.S. Soy, Europe Expects to Buy Even More

(Bloomberg) -- After doubling its purchases of U.S. soybeans this season, the European Union has signaled that it’s ready to buy even more from America.

Imports, which jumped amid the U.S.-China trade spat, are “bound to increase even further” as the EU has started the process to authorize the use of U.S. soy for biofuels, the European Commission said Monday in a statement. Feedback on the proposal is due next week.

After Snatching Up U.S. Soy, Europe Expects to Buy Even More

Europe has become a key export destination for U.S. soybeans this season after China, which typically dominates purchases, avoided American farm products. China’s snub helped to push American prices near a decade low in September, boosting their appeal in other markets. The EU also pledged last year to increase U.S. soybean and liquefied natural gas imports, as the two moved to ease their own trade tensions.

Since the season started in July, Europe has imported 5.2 million tons of U.S. soy, up from 2.4 million tons at the same time last year. The crop is “still the most competitive on the market,” the commission said on its website. Cheap foreign oilseed supplies have helped to offset a shortfall in Europe’s rapeseed harvest, which was hampered by summer drought.

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