The European Union cut its duty on maize (corn) imports to zero on Thursday to take account of a rise in US maize prices following a reduced forecast for the 2020/21 US maize harvest, the European Commission said.
The new zero-rated duty is effective as of Thursday and will also apply to rye and sorghum imports.
"The revised tariff [...] is calculated based on the difference between the European reference price and the world benchmark for maize (i.e. the US cif price – cost, insurance and freight included – at the port of Rotterdam)," the Commission said in a statement.
The tariff for maize, sorghum and rye has been updated several times in the past months, starting at the end of April due to a significant drop of the US cif maize price, mainly as a result of the collapse of bioethanol demand in the United States, it said.
US maize prices have rebounded in recent weeks, hitting a six-week high on Tuesday, on concerns over widespread damage from a storm in a key US growing region as well as dry and hot weather, both leading to a cut in the US maize crop forecast.