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Argentina: U.S and Chinese soy companies in Argentina impacted as COVID cases rise

“Argentina coronavirus cases throw wrench in global soy trade” – 29 July 2020

…Crop giant Argentina has reported its first cases of the coronavirus at port terminals that ship soybean products to the world in a fresh blow to the global commodities trade already disrupted by the pandemic. China's Cofco International and U.S. agribusiness firm Bunge Ltd. were both forced to idle port terminals and soybean crush plants north of Rosario on the Parana River, Argentina's hub for shipments of soy meal for livestock feed and soy oil for cooking and biofuel. Local shipper Vicentin SAIC also had its operations disrupted after employees tested positive...Cofco has halted work at an oilseed crushing plant and port facility after 12 workers tested positive for Covid-19. Bunge stopped operations on Saturday at a similar facility nearby after one employee tested positive. A Vicentin bottling plant in the vicinity is also temporarily out-of-action after reporting a case. Argentina is the top exporter of soybean products. For now, traders aren't too concerned about disruptions as the number of cases is small, Argentine farmers aren't selling and Covid-19 has hurt demand for products like soybean oil, widely used by restaurants. That could change if the shutdowns are prolonged…Farming, oilseed crushing and crop exports were exempted from the lockdown...A worker at Renova SA, a partnership between Vicentin and the agriculture unit of Switzerland-based Glencore Plc, tested positive earlier in the year but was quickly isolated and no more cases have been reported at Renova's two plants in the same area north of Rosario, Vicentin's spokesman said. Sixty workers from plant-port facilities around Rosario are currently in self-isolation, said Gustavo Idigoras, head of...Ciara-Cec, whose members include the global agribusiness giants...