Longping High-Tech and ChemChina set up corn seed JV

Chinese seed firm Yuan Longping High-Tech Agriculture is setting up a corn seed joint venture with China National Agrochemical Co Ltd, a unit of state-owned chemicals giant ChemChina. Each company will contribute 50 million yuan ($7.90 million) to the Beijing-based venture, which will be called Xianlong Biotechnology Co.

The joint venture will allow further development and sales of new varieties of corn for the Chinese market,and will also promote domestic biotech corn.

Currently, China does not allow genetically modified organism (GMO) corn to be planted in the country, although it has said it was targeting commercialization of the crop by 2020. Many local biotech companies have developed varieties of GMO corn suited to the China market, the world’s second-largest producer of corn. ChemChina, which recently acquired Syngenta, a global powerhouse in GMO crops, is expected to be a major player in the market once commercial planting is permitted.

This deal will help innovate and improve commercialization of corn seed at our business and its overall structure in China, Longping High-Tech said.