http://dailyreckoning.com/food-the-trade-of-the-decade/ Note Passport Capital in Article as well Passport in AMZ
Brazil poised to be next potash player
Posted: August 19, 2009, 10:22 AM by Jonathan Ratner
Market Call, potash, commodities, Brazil
As one of the world’s largest agriculture-centric economies but the second largest importer of potash, Brazil is positioned to become the next major global producer of the fertilizer component that is essential for large-scale farming. That is the conclusion of a new report from Wellington West Capital Markets that suggests existing potash industry leaders who have benefited from market dominance in recent years, stand to lose the most if Brazil becomes potash self-sufficient and the next major independent exporter of this strategic resource.
“While this import dependency was seemingly of little national significance before potash prices escalated in the last couple of years, we now believe it puts the country’s economic growth engine, driven in large part by agriculture, in a precarious position,” said analyst Robert Winslow.
However, he noted strong evidence that Brazil contains an undeveloped world-class potash ore body with the Amazon basin. If developed, it could could support several multi-million tonne producing mines for decades and lead to Brazil’s potash self-sufficiency.
“Given the potential economic and political benefits at hand, we submit it is only a matter of time before government and private investment moves to develop a domestic potash industry that rivals today’s leading producers,” Mr. Winslow said. “Brazil’s economic growth and as such the country’s future demand for potash fertilizer should remain robust and continue to grow for many years, if not decades.”
Agriculture accounted for an estimated US$110-billion, or 5.5% of Brazil’s GDP in 2008, according to the U.S. State Department. The country is now among the world’s top exporters of many agricultural commodities, including coffee, sugar, orange juice, soybeans, tobacco, beef, and poultry.
Brazil is also one of the few places with the potential to materially increase arable land and has an abundance of renewable frashwater, Mr. Winslow said, noting the government’s 37% year-over-year increase in agricultural spending.
The country must also compete with China and other emerging markets to secure potash. So guaranteeing domestic supply mitigates the risks to economic growth posed by potentially strained global supplies and the possibility of escalating prices.
Establishing lower-cost potash supply due to lower transportation costs and the eliminating duties could also help establish Brazil as a sustainable, lower-cost grain producer, the analyst said.
While Brazil is likely at least five to seven years away from seeing its first large-scale potash mine in the Amazon, Mr. Winslow nonetheless warned that the equity value of publicly-traded market leaders could begin to reflect long-term potash prices well below current contracts.
He identified several Canadian-listed juniors that have exposure to potash in South America and could benefit from an emerging industry in Brazil. The include TSX Venture names like Allana Resources Inc., Amazon Mining Holding Co. and Atacama Minerals Corp., TSX-listed Talon Metals Corp., Sprott Resource Corp. and Western Potash Corp., as well as Lara Exploration Ltd.
Mr. Winslow favours companies that have access to a potash resource with favourable economics, ease of permitting or permits in place, availability and/or proximity to infrastructure, strong management and/or public/private sector partners, and capital or access to it.
Read more: http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/tradingdesk/archive/2009/08/19/brazil-poised-to-be-next-potash-player.aspx#ixzz0YqD1Q9Af
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Agrifirma Agrees to Fund Trials of Amazon Mining's ThermoPotash Fertilizer
Source: Amazon Mining Holding Plc
On 1:13 pm EST, Tuesday November 24, 2009TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - 11/24/09) - Amazon Mining Holding Plc (TSX-V:AMZ - News)("Amazon" or the "Company"), is pleased to announce that the Company has entered into an agreement with Agrifirma Brazil, a United Kingdom based farmland operator and developer, to fund agronomic tests using Amazon Mining's proposed ThermoPotash product, derived from the Cerrado Verde project, Cerrado Verde is a source of potash rich rock from which Amazon plans to produce a slow-release, non- chloride, multi-nutrient, fertilizer product.
Agrifirma plans to test ThermoPotash in real world conditions for use with soybeans, maize and corn. Agrifirma hopes to utilize the slow release characteristics of ThermoPotash to provide a baseload of potash nutrients during the conversion of scrubland and pastureland into fertile farmland for cultivating the crops mentioned above.
Agrifirma endeavours to develop its agricultural land ecologically, to minimize environmental impact. ThermoPotash is expected to be suitable for organic farming not containing environmental pollutants like conventional potash (potassium chloride), known to contaminate groundwater. An off shoot of potassium chloride fertilizer use in Brazil is the use of limestone by farmers to neutralize the acidity created by the chloride left in the soil. This practice releases a large amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and increases the salinity of farm soils. The nature of ThermoPotash should curtail the loss of fertilizer to groundwater and reduce limestone needs, minimizing greenhouse gas emissions. Agrifirma hopes to benefit from these characteristics.
Agrifirma is a modern farmland operating and development company, formed in 2008 to buy and convert unproductive scrubland and pastureland into high quality arable land. Currently the company controls 69,112 hectares of land in western Bahia. Brazil currently uses approximately 10% of its potential arable land, estimated at 550 million hectares predominantly in the Cerrado region where its project is located, away from the Amazon rainforest and one of the last major agricultural frontiers still to be developed.
Agrifirma, boasts an impressive management, board and advisory committee that include Donald Coxe, renowned investment strategists and author of "The New Reality on Wall Street"; Jim Rogers author of "Adventure Capitalist" and "Investment Biker"; Julio Bestani, CEO, former CFO of South American agro- industrial giant Adecoagro, funded by George Soros; Ian Watson, Chairman, former Chairman Galahad Gold; and, Roberto Rodrigues, director, former Brazilian minister of Agriculture (2003-2006).
About the Agreement
The memorandum of understanding between Amazon Mining and Agrifirma governs the testing of ThermoPotash product from a proposed pilot plant production. Under the terms of the agreement Amazon will provide ThermoPotash to Agrifirma for use in planting soybeans, maize and corn. Agrifirma will designate a test plot and fund all costs associated with the testing. Argrifirma's investments will include yield comparisons and chemical analysis of nutrient behaviour in the soil, with special attention to barren soils being converted for agricultural use. The companies will jointly define the period in which the fertilizer is employed, and the stages of study. Data from the studies will be jointly owned by Amazon and Agrifirma to be used for development of the product, product marketing and project financing. Agrifirma will have pre-emptive right to the acquisition of 15% of potential ThermoPotash production at market price for a period of 24 months, in the event of successful commissioning of a ThermoPotash production facility by Amazon Mining.
As per press release dated July 27, 2009, 630,000 options were granted to new members of the Board of Directors as well as consultants and staff. These options expire July 23, 2014.
Amazon Mining is a mineral exploration and development company founded by Brazilians in 2005. The company is focused on the development of Cerrado Verde project. Cerrado Verde is source of a potash rich rock from which Amazon plans to produce a slow-release, non-chloride, multi-nutrient, fertilizer product. Amazon Mining is a UK public company with shares listed on the TSX Venture Exchange since November 2007.
On behalf of the Board of Directors of Amazon Mining Holding Plc, Jed Richardson, Vice President of Corporate Development
Cautionary Language and Forward Looking Statements
THIS PRESS RELEASE CONTAINS CERTAIN "FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS", WHICH INCLUDE BUT IS NOT LIMITED TO, STATEMENTS WITH RESPECT TO THE FUTURE FINANCIAL OR OPERATING PERFORMANCE OF THE COMPANY, ITS SUBSIDIARIES AND ITS PROJECTS, STATEMENTS REGARDING USE OF PROCEEDS, EXPLORATION PROSPECTS, IDENTIFICATION OF MINERAL RESERVES, COSTS OF AND CAPITAL FOR EXPLORATION PROJECTS, EXPLORATION EXPENDITURES, TIMING OF FUTURE EXPLORATION AND PERMITTING, REQUIREMENTS FOR ADDITIONAL CAPITAL, GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS OF MINING OPERATIONS, ENVIRONMENTAL RISKS, RECLAMATION EXPENSES, TITLE DISPUTES OR CLAIMS, AND LIMITATIONS OF INSURANCE COVERAGE. FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS CAN GENERALLY BE IDENTIFIED BY THE USE OF WORDS SUCH AS "PLANS", "EXPECTS", OR "DOES NOT EXPECT" OR "IS EXPECTED", "ANTICIPATES" OR "DOES NOT ANTICIPATE", OR "BELIEVES", "INTENDS", "FORECASTS", "BUDGET", "SCHEDULED", "ESTIMATES" OR VARIATIONS OF SUCH WORDS OR PHRASES OR STATE THAT CERTAIN ACTIONS, EVENT, OR RESULTS "MAY", "COULD", "WOULD", "MIGHT", OR "WILL BE TAKEN", "OCCUR" OR "BE ACHIEVED". FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS INVOLVE KNOWN AND UNKNOWN RISKS, UNCERTAINTIES AND OTHER FACTORS WHICH MAY CAUSE THE ACTUAL RESULTS, PERFORMANCE OR ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE COMPANY TO BE MATERIALLY DIFFERENT FROM ANY FUTURE RESULTS, PERFORMANCE OR ACHIEVEMENTS EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED BY SAID STATEMENTS. THERE CAN BE NO ASSURANCES THAT FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS WILL PROVE TO BE ACCURATE, AS ACTUAL RESULTS AND FUTURE EVENTS COULD DIFFER MATERIALLY FROM THOSE ANTICIPATED IN SAID STATEMENTS. ACCORDINGLY, READERS SHOULD NOT PLACE UNDUE RELIANCE ON FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS.
The potential grades detailed in this release are conceptual in nature. There has been insufficient exploration to define a mineral resource and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in the targets being delineated as a mineral resource.
Readers are cautioned not to rely solely on the summary of such information contained in this release and are directed to the complete set of drill results posted on Amazon's website (www.amazonplc.com) and filed on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) and any future amendments to such. Readers are also directed to the cautionary notices and disclaimers contained herein.
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