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Screen_Shot_2014-09-08_at_7.45.41_PMToday at the halls of the BSI Staff club, representatives from the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) and the Belize Sugar Industry Limited’s negotiating team met to renew engagements to conclude a new commercial agreement that will define a commercial relationship between both miller and producer. BSI/ASR’s Financial Director Belizario Carballo says that the new agreement seeks to set clear terms and conditions in which to operate.

Belizario Carballo – Financial Director, BSI/ASR

“We are hopeful that at the start of the crop we will have in place a new agreement that will set clearly the terms and conditions on which we operate and that is what we all did today as you all now we had started this process quite some time ago but we got sort of bugged down on the matter of the bagasse payment and so we have now reengage with the purpose of concluding a completely new agreement that would include the matter of the payment for bagasse but that is just one component of this overall ne agreement, so we met today and we had an opportunity of presented, BSI presented a draft, a proposal on a new commercial agreement and we presented to the BSCFA highlighting the key features, the draft that we presented today builds on the agreement that existed before and it also builds on the discussion that we had had before on this new agreement but also introduces a few new changes which we would want to engage, the BSCFA discussion on and so it was the first meeting in that process, it is initiating the process and then we would need to negotiate that agreement, today the BSCFA received it and had a chance to receive pour presentation ask a few questions and then need to comeback and then start the process of negotiating a new commercial agreement.”

And while the negotiations for quantum on bagasse is  a component on this new commercial proposal, Vice Chair of the BSCFA, Committee of Management, Alfredo Ortega, says they will analyse the proposal and hope that discussions concludes with a win-win situation for all involved.

Maria Novelo – Reporter

“On the surface how does it look, is it appealing and satisfactory to you all?”

Alfredo Ortega– Vice-Chair, BSCFA, COM

“Well, I think that today we are approaching this in a more positive situation, I think that we can see that there is a light at least in the near future in this regard, I think we are looking forward to finalize this issue in the most peaceful manner that we can and where we can have a win win situation between the BSI and the cane farmers.”

Maria Novelo – Reporter

“But the relationship with the BSI has been like a tug and war, don’t you see that happening again in this commercial agreement?”

Alfredo Ortega– Vice-Chair, BSCFA, COM

“Well, I don’t know if it will happen but we will try our best to see how best we can resolve this situation and resolve it in a peaceful situation as I said before where we can come up with a win-win situation into this because it is not beneficial to either side, like going into a tug and war into this situation so we are looking forward today starting in a new and fresh atmosphere and finalize this situation before the start of the next crop.”

It is of note that the last dated agreement signed by both parties was in July of 2002, this proposal seeks to build on the agreement and introduce new changes. Both parties are tentatively scheduled to reconvene in two weeks.

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