US energy secy concerned about high ethanol prices


WASHINGTON, June 23 (Reuters) - U.S. Energy Secretary Sam Bodman said on Friday he was concerned about this week's jump in ethanol prices that might be passed on to consumers at the pump, but he said lifting the U.S. duty on Brazilian ethanol imports won't increase supplies that much to help.

"This is something that we're concerned about ... when I see that kind of price for ethanol," Bodman told reporters in a telephone briefing. Ethanol has jumped to $5 a gallon in the spot market.

However, Bodman dismissed the suggestion that either Congress or the Bush administration, acting on its own, should lift the U.S. ethanol import duty to bring in more supplies that would lower prices. "I don't believe it will materially affect supplies in the short-term," he said.



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