Some roads reopened in Brazil though truck strike persists

viernes 27 de febrero de 2015 10:45 GYT

SAO PAULO Feb 27 (Reuters) - Striking truckers lifted their blockade of dozens of highways in Brazil after police began fining and arresting protesters, though strike organizers said they had no plans to end their stoppage now in its 10th day.

Road blockages were reported at 59 locations across six states on Friday down from the Thursday count of 88 road blocks, according to the latest report from highway police. Most protesting drivers rejected an initial government offer and negotiations were not scheduled to resume until March 10.

Even so, a spokesman for Paranagua port said 514 soy trucks had arrived on Friday, up from 255 trucks at the same time on Thursday. Brazil is the world's No. 2 soy producer and a top global supplier.

Silos at Paranagua, the second-largest soy export port in Brazil, now have enough soybeans to keep filling ships until March 3 rather than March 2, spokeswoman Ceres Battistelli said.

"That buys us one more day we could load ships without running out of soybeans," Battistelli said.

Chicago Board Of Trade March soybeans have risen steadily on fears of supply disruptions because of the strike and were up 0.4 percent on Friday.

The highway police bulletin said 25 fines had been issued in Parana state, where Paranagua is located, and one person had been arrested in Mato Grosso do Sul state.

Brazil's top soybean export port of Santos has remained open without disruption since Wednesday.

The trucker strike was sparked by mounting frustration over high diesel prices and rising freight costs. Brazil's government has yet to sufficiently address those concerns, the president of national autonomous transport federation Diumar Bueno told Reuters, meaning there is no end in site for the protests.   Continuación...