BSCFA0008The negotiations between the Belize Sugar Industries Limited and the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association on revenue sharing for bagasse are still looming. Several meetings and press releases later, today there is the possibility that some progress is in the horizon.

 

As we told you on Tuesday night’s newscast, late Tuesday evening BSI issued a letter to the BSCFA in response to the Association's letter issued on December 24th, 2013.

 

That letter was a response from farmers on BSI's letter in which it had listed six points in their intention to consider a payment for bagasse and to finalize a new cane purchase agreement.

 

Farmers basically rejected three of the points and modified the remaining which was forwarded to BSSI/ASR and the Prime Minister of Belize, Dean Barrow. This morning, BSCFA officials met to discuss BSI's letter. Vice Chair of the Committee of Management Alfredo Ortega says that BSI stated it will begin negotiations for payment on Baggasse but the Association needs a clearer answer on the matter.


Alfredo Ortega- Vice Chairman BSCFA, COM


“Well, it is very little, it is very little but at least it has that they have an intension for a negotiation of payment for bagasse it is not so clear as we would wanted it to be and that is why we are asking this meeting with the Prime Minister so that we can gather together and we can have something that we can present to the farmers that is much clear than this letter that they have sent to us. The letter than the one that they have send us before because in this at least they have indicated that yes there is an intention to negotiate payment for bagasse and they also mention with the same letter that they sent to the Prime Minister but with a modification but this time it is been sent to the committee of management with a much clearer with the modification that they are giving that yes there is a negotiation that there will be a payment for bagasse.”


Dalila Ical– Reporter


“Will the BSFCA still intended to get this signed, confirmation, guaranteed that you know what they can’t pull back?”

 

Alfredo Ortega- Vice Chairman BSCFA, COM


“Yes because that is the mandate that we have with the farmers that we cannot go elsewhere in regards to this and we have to really work with the based on the mandate that we have and that is what we are looking for so based on that we are seeking the intervention of the Prime Minister in this.”


As stated by Ortega, they hope to meet once more with the Prime Minister to further discuss the letter and the Association's mandate. Along with this is the urgent matter of agreeing on a date to start the new crop that has been delayed for well over a month. After that meeting, the Association will call a general meeting to present the progress in the negotiations thus far. That meeting they hope will be held on Sunday, January 12th.  We’ll keep following developments to this story.

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