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Dec 24, 2021

Minister of Agriculture Says Farmers Welcome Crop Season Opening

We also heard from Minister of Agriculture Jose Abelardo Mai, who told us over the phone that the government will be part of the negotiations, every step of the way.  He says that they, too, are confident that a new commercial agreement will be reached by the end of April of 2022.  In the meantime, farmers and the miller welcome the opening of the sugar crop.


On the Phone: Jose Abelardo Mai, Minister of Agriculture

“It will begin with a rollover of the existing contract up to the end of April. During this time government will be very much engaged with its stakeholders t ensure that negotiations are ongoing and that both parties are negotiating in good faith. We are confident that by the end of April there will be a new agreement and that all stakeholders would be satisfied.  That is what government do, this is totally a private sector, but government is here to facilitate the process. And, that is what governments do. That is what the previous government ought to have done, and they did not. We have used this opportunity to facilitate the process, and that in the end we are very hopeful that the agreement will be met and that all stakeholder will be satisfied with the new agreement. It is going to be a slow start. It usually is a slow start. The weather is improving. The sugar roads are being repaired. So, I think that a day or two delay will not hurt as much. But we need to get the crop going to ensure we get all the sugar cane in the mill.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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