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LatinNews Daily - 23 June 2021

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In brief: Brazil boosts agricultural credit

* The Brazilian government led by President Jair Bolsonaro has presented its ‘2021/2022 harvest plan’, which comprises R$251.2bn (US$50.7bn) worth of credit lines for farmers to help boost agricultural output. The harvest plan’s budget for the coming agricultural year (1 July 2021-30 June 2022) is a R$14.9bn or 6.3% increase on last year’s. The credit is destined for small-scale, medium, and large agricultural producers through a variety of different programmes, focused on financing production, distribution, insurance, and the regeneration of degraded areas, amongst other things. “Once again, we are prioritising family agriculture and investments, particularly for low-carbon agriculture, [the budget for] which increased 100% in this plan”, Agriculture Minister Tereza Cristina da Costa Dias said upon announcing the harvest plan. Da Costa was referencing the so-called ‘Programa ABC’, which encourages the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture and has a total budget of R$5.05bn this year, with 12-year credit lines available at between 5.5% and 7% interest rates. Both Da Costa Dias and President Bolsonaro stressed Brazil’s position as a global agricultural powerhouse and top exporter of primary products, noting that the 2021/2022 harvest plan will help boost the country’s competitiveness.