Monsanto Co., the global leader in seed technology, says it is investing an additional $84 million in a Chinese joint venture. According to a Reuters report, the agreement is intended to expand the venture’s market share for corn hybrids in China.
Under the agreement, which is subject to Chinese government approval, Monsanto’s partner in the venture, China National Seed Group Corp. will contribute its corn seed business to the joint venture, CNSGC-DEKALB Seed Co. Ltd. (CNDK).
Reuters reports that the agreement will provide CNDK access to corn seed hybrids developed by Monsanto and China Seed while allowing China Seed to expand product offerings to Chinese farmers across corn-growing areas beyond the tropical region where the company currently operates, officials say.
China is the world’s second largest corn growing region and is seen as a key area of growth for Monsanto and its rivals as they race to establish market share there. Chinese growers annually plant 27 million hectares, or 67 million acres, of corn.