Government can no longer sustain pumping close to $30 million annual into the sugar industry.
And the end of the current season in April will trigger the commencement of a phased withdrawal by the state and the move towards promised privatisation.
“In terms of the transitioning of the sugar industry to a private sector-owned industry, with no Government participation, for the end of this coming financial year that process should begin; first with the employee enfranchisement programme and then we are also going to look at the transitioning of the Portvale Sugar Factory, also into private ownership, with shares being made available to employees and the public as well,” Minister of Agriculture and Food Security Indar Weir told Starcom Network yesterday.
He said Government gave the Barbados Agricultural Management Company Ltd. a $10 million subvention and contributed about $17 million to the sugar industry by way of Portvale and the purchase of canes to go to Portvale from the farms. (Nation News)