France, Germany Push for Stricter Biofuel Checks Amid Fraud Allegations

and have urged the European Union to implement tighter scrutiny on overseas suppliers of biofuel amidst ongoing investigations into alleged fraud in imports from . The European industry has raised concerns over a notable increase in imports from China, suspecting that some of these supplies are falsely labeled as being produced with recycled oil and fat, when in fact they're made with cheaper and less sustainable virgin oil.

In a joint communication submitted to a gathering of EU energy ministers, France, Germany, and the stressed the need for enhanced inspections of biofuel production facilities globally. They emphasized that certification of foreign biofuels as sustainable should be declined if access to the production sites is denied.

An EU diplomat disclosed that no objections were voiced to the proposal during Thursday's meeting, but no immediate action was taken either. The matter has been passed on to the European Commission for further consideration.

The Commission, however, has yet to provide a response to requests for comment regarding the issue. Currently, the Commission is conducting multiple investigations into biofuel imports, including inquiries into biodiesel from Indonesia potentially evading EU duties and suspicions of low-priced biodiesel dumping from China.

Biodiesel stands as a significant alternative fuel to reduce carbon emissions in the transportation sector, with Europe advocating for the use of recycled oil over virgin vegetable oil. Notably, there have been complaints from U.S. producers regarding a surge in shipments of recycled oil from China.

The EU biodiesel industry, valued at approximately 31 billion euros ($33.6 billion) annually according to the Commission, has frequently been embroiled in disputes with trading partners, particularly concerning the utilization of palm oil, which the EU views as contributing to deforestation.

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