* Mill to produce 5 mln tonnes cane per year by 2014-15
* Brazil is world’s top exporter of cane-based ethanol
SAO PAULO, Dec 7 (Reuters) - BP Biocombustiveis, a unit of oil company BP Plc, said on Friday that it will invest 716 million reais ($348 million) to double capacity at Tropical, its Brazilian sugar cane mill in Edèia in Goiàs state.
Expansion will likely start in 2013 and Tropical should be operating at full capacity, crushing 5 million tonnes of cane per year, by 2014 or 2015, the president of BP Biocombustiveis in Brazil, Mario Lindenhayn, said in a statement.
After the expansion, Tropical will have the capacity to produce 480 million liters of ethanol per year, Lindenhayn said.
BP Biocombustiveis in Brazil also runs the Itumbiara mill, also in Goiàs, and the Ituiutaba mill, in the city of the same name in Minas Gerais.
Brazil, a pioneer in the production of biofuels from sugar cane, is typically the world’s largest exporter of cane-based ethanol. It is expected to ship 2.5 billion liters in 2012.