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November 25, 2013

Dredging at the Port of Paranagua to Accommodate Larger Vessels

The Ports of Paranagua and Antonina in the state of Parana in southern Brazil initiated their latest improvement project last week. The eleven month dredging project will remove 7 million cubic meters of sediments from the berths at the two ports and the channels leading to the ports. The dredging will reestablish the draft of the channel and berths at Paranagua from the present 8 to 12 meters to 16 meters. At Antonina the draft will increase from the present 6 meters to 9.8 meters.

The R$ 140 million project is an effort to accommodate larger ships at the ports in order to export what is expected to be a record large 2013/14 soybean crop. The current estimates of the 2013/14 Brazilian soybean crop are in tnhe range of 88 to 90 million tons, which is about 10% larger than last year's crop. The movement of vessels is not expected to be significantly disrupted during the dredging project although there will be extra caution taken for movement in and out of the ports.

The money for the project was actually allocated last year, but obstacles in obtaining an environmental license and an operational license delayed the project for a year. The money for the project is part of the Program for Accelerated Growth (PAC 2) which the Brazilian government established to improve the country's inadequate infrastructure.