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Cabinet Sub Committee Established to Address Impasse Between B.S.I./A.S.R. and B.S.C.F.A.

Mar 10, 2023

Cabinet Sub Committee Established to Address Impasse Between B.S.I./A.S.R. and B.S.C.F.A.

Prime Minister John Briceño

On Thursday, we told you that Cabinet has agreed to convene a Commission of Inquiry into the sugar industry in an effort to review the sustainability of the industry, as well as its modernization. To clear up questions as to the intended outcome of this exercise, Prime Minister Briceño sought to explain the purpose and functions of the commission. Apart from the Commission of Inquiry, Cabinet has also agreed to establish a subcommittee, led by Minister Kareem Musa, to look at the commercial agreement aspect of the impasse between B.S.I./A.S.R. and the B.S.C.F.A.

Prime Minister John Briceño

“Now there are two different things we are dealing with right here, the commercial agreement and the sustainability and viability of the sugar industry. A commission of inquiry can only provide recommendations. They have no legal footing to say this is what you have to do and this fits. So, we said it is high time to set up the commission of inquiry that will look at the entire sugar industry. Look at the fields, the planting, the production, the cutting of it, transport to BSI to the factory and for the factory, the export, the whole value chain of it and look at for instance the sugar act that has t be modernized. The idea is that going through all of this and bringing in the experts to take a look at the cost of how much it cost for our farmers to produce a ton of can and BSI what it cost to produce a ton sugar, making sure they are making the right charges to the farmers. Working through that so that we can come up with a firm set of recommendations that we can use as a blue print for the future of the sugar industry. Now, for the commercial agreement what we are attempting to do, the mediation did not work, we are hoping that if the three ministers, we have asked Minister Musa to head the team, Minister Mai as the minister responsible for the saucer industry and Minister Mira to meet with the cane farmers association and say ok in the commercial agreement and say what are the issues you have and why you have these issues and then they could meet with BSI separately and say what are your concerns in the commercial agreement.”