All eyes are on the sugar industry over the past weeks and as the situation continues to unfold without a resolution a foot, concerns start to grow in other sectors outside the sugar industry. Today, PUP representative of Orange Walk Central John Briceno weighed in on the situation. The delay of the season or lack thereof, he fears will have severe economic implications and as such urges government to take a more decisive approach in helping to resolve the matter.
Honorable John Briceno – Orange Walk Central Area Representative PUP
“As a cane farmer and as a Belizean I am very concern about what is happening with the sugar industry as we speak , we realize that in the north without the sugar industry we are dead and that is the engine that drives the economy in the north, not only in the north but in the entire country of Belize so all of us as Belizean have to be very concern about what is taking place and I think what we need to do is that the government have to get in and get involve immediately and certainly the minister of agriculture does not have the ability and the where it all or the intelligence to be able to lead the discussion and it is something where the Prime Minister needs to get personal involve and get BSI and the cane farmers leadership to sit down around the table and to seriously discuss and hammer out an agreement that is going to be and it has to be an agreement that it going to be beneficial to everyone it cannot only be beneficial for BSI or for the cane farmers because it then it will not work, what I have been saying all the time that for there to be a sugar industry we need to have a factory and we need to have cane farmers so both of the play an integral role in the success of the industry, over the past few years we have seen a renewed interest a renewed vigor, a renewed energy, in the sugar industry where more and more farmers have been feeling more optimistic about the future of the sugar industry so they have been planting more cane, for the first time we have delivered 13 million tons and despite all of that they still have cane in the fields that they could not take out so that means that the cane farmers has been planting more cane, BSI have been improving their productivity in milling more cane but the factory can only mill 1.3 million tons, we need to sit down and have a serious discussion with BSI to increase his production to be able to take it to at least 1.8 million tons of cane that they would be able to mill by doing that that means there is going to be even more money for everybody so I am certainly concern and I hope that the rights minds prevail, that we understand that this is not about party politics this is not about who can win and who is going to lose it is about all of us we are in this thing together and at the end of the day should the industry God forbid crash or shut down we will be going to be in serious problems in the north and the entire country.”
We will continue to follow the story as it develops.
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