Cosan, Shell sign binding deal on ethanol venture

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Royal Dutch Shell Plc and sugar and ethanol giant Cosan signed a binding agreement on Wednesday that will create Brazil's No. 3 fuel distributor, as well as explore international ethanol and sugar opportunities.

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Royal Dutch Shell Plc and sugar and ethanol giant Cosan signed a binding agreement on Wednesday that will create Brazil's No. 3 fuel distributor, as well as explore international ethanol and sugar opportunities.

The joint venture, with estimated annual sales of $21 billion, was modified since its initial announcement in February to include all of Cosan's energy generation business and an additional 500 million reais ($283.6 million) in debt owed to Brazilian development bank BNDES.

Cosan, the world's largest sugar and ethanol producer, also said in a securities filing the initial accord was changed to make the venture a global biofuels provider. As a result of that, Cosan and Shell are barred from competing with the new entity.

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