Minister Vega addresses fight over bagasse

vlcsnap-2014-07-22-07h30m34s238The fight for a cut in bagasse continues with the ever looming possibility of the 2009 sugar crisis repeating. In the last meeting of farmers which took place in San Roman Village, Corozal on Sunday July 20th, the Farmers unanimously decided to reject BSI/ASR’s proposal of 51 cents per ton of fiber and green lighted the board of management lead by CEO Oscar Alonzo to continue negotiations until October 15th. At the meeting, a motion was also approved to call in Sugar Industry Control Board (SICB) to intervene in the negotiations. But according to Minister of Natural Resources and Agriculture Hon. Gaspar Vega, the two private sectors being BSI/ASR and the BSCFA will both have to agree to allow the SICB to intervene

vlcsnap-2014-07-23-05h54m53s106Hon Gaspar Vega – Minister of Natural Resources and Agriculture

“I’m not an attorney, and I have not seen the request yet, but if that is done I would have to check, but I believe it’s going to be a little tricky because it’s two private sectors.  The two of them will have to agree that we can intervene, I believe.  But I’ll tell you this, to me the most important thing is the industry.”

 

download (3)According to Minister Vega, the BSCFA have lost focus of the big picture, which is the survival of the industry itself.

Hon Gaspar Vega

“What both parties must remember [is] that they must ensure that the industry survives and moves forward.  We have to get together.  We have to get prepared for 2017.  A lot of farmers know it, but sometimes I feel that they’re not putting as much importance to the 2017 challenges that we will be faced with. 

I wish they could have settled [the bagasse issue] with some kind of figures.”

Minister Vega ended by saying that the Sugar industry is one marriage that must not be divorced.

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