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2019 sugar production calls for serious examination – GAWU

first_imgThe Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) has been lambasted by the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) in regards to its 2019 sugar production and its plans for 2020.Comparison with 2019 production with what the three currently operable estates realized in 2015The Union related that the statement issued by GuySuCo has confirmed the initial position that production would not surpass the 100,000 tonnes.“The proof is now in the pudding and sugar production that the industry’s two largest and most efficient units have fallen drastically since 2015. The GuySuCo may well argue that the un-harvested canes could have resulted in higher production. This explanation we treat with a pinch of salt. That reality is that even if all the canes were harvested, production in 2019 would still have been lower than what was produced by the three estates in 2015,” GAWU stated.The industry, according to its 2019 first crop production report, revealed would produce 107,023 tonnes of sugar as against 110,273 tonnes of sugar produced in 2015, but it was noted that a total of 92,246 tonnes of sugar was sold in the local, regional and international markets.The sugar company said that the Second Crop production was closed on December 21, 2019, with 1981 hectares that could not be harvested and will be carried over to the First Crop of 2020.As a result of this, a further shortfall was recorded with in excess of 80,000 tonnes of cane from Albion, 60,000 tonnes of cane from Blairmont and 11,000 tonnes of cane from Uitvlugt were not harvested, but GAWU is of the strong belief that if it was harvested, the company still would not meet its targeted amount.“Uitvlugt is the only estate that has moved forward, at the same time, we contend, that production at that estate ought to have been higher. Just a few weeks ago, we disclosed that the estate was not having all canes harvested sent to the factory for processing. Images and reports from workers informed that tonnes of canes were left in fields which were mechanically loaded,” GAWU further added.GuySuCo has repeatedly cried about lack of financing for its operations. However, the GAWU has stated that the $30 billion bond it received in 2018 should have been utilised to safeguard sugar production and the jobs of the remaining thousands of sugar workers.In fact, SPU’s Head Colvin Heath-London had accused GuySuCo of not being forthcoming with information on how the $7.420 billion disbursement from the bond was used, something which he said is proving problematic for bondholders.Nevertheless, Agriculture Minister Noel Holder on August 21, 2015, boasted that the sugar industry will be able to recover.“GuySuCo will recover and 2015 will mark a turning point in the performance of GuySuCo,” Holder had stated. But with that being said, the sugar industry has continued to struggle with over 7000 sugar workers being sent home.last_img read more

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