US-China trade war could be fuelling Amazon fires

The fires currently consuming Brazil's Amazon rainforest seem a world away from the tense diplomacy in the United States' trade war with China. In truth, they are more closely connected than you might suspect.

One of Beijing's main acts of retaliation in the fight has been to freeze purchases of the 30 million to 40 million tonnes of American soya beans it imports each year. That has left it more dependent than ever on Brazilian soya beans to take up the slack.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 27, 2019, with the headline 'US-China trade war could be fuelling Amazon fires'. Print Edition | Subscribe