Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Agriculture, Economy, Environment » The Many Issues Surrounding Sugar in the North
Oct 25, 2022

The Many Issues Surrounding Sugar in the North

Today, the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association went at length to explain the issues it has with A.S.R/B.S.I. It’s the same concerns that have remained on the negotiating table even before the last sugar crop opened. But it’s just weeks to the opening of the new crop and the association made it clear today that the crop will not open until the two sides can sign a new bargaining agreement. Following their press briefing, we posed the main concerns to A.S.R/B.S.I. for their reaction. We present some of their main points raised.


Oscar Alonzo

Oscar Alonzo, Chairman, B.S.C.F.A.

“We have in-house capacity that can analyze those transactions. We don’t need to go outside and hire an independent firm, etc. so we’re not interested in auditing. That is their operations, right. We’re not asking to audit their operations. All we’re asking for is detailed documentation that would enable us to verify the cost that they are deducting from the gross revenues of the sales of sugar and molasses for us to determine that we’re getting a fair payment for our sugarcane.”


Shawn Chavarria

Shawn Chavarria, Director of Finance, A.S.R./B.S.I.

“We have provided them also with financial statements for Belize Co-Generation Limited, which is the entity that supplies energy to the grid. As we know, the B.S.C.F.A is asking for an increased payment for bagasse totaling around five million (dollars) so we have provided them with the financial statements, the Power Purchase Agreement to show them that BelCoGen is making losses, that the tariff BelCoGen receives does not include any value for bagasse, to prove once and for all really that there’s nothing to give in that respect. But even that has not been able to answer the questions of the B.S.C.F.A, so really that’s why we’ve arrived at this point where we feel that we’ve provided everything that is needed for the B.S.C.F.A to understand our rationale and argument and they’re still not accepting it and therefore we’re at this juncture.”


Javier Keme

Javier Keme, Chairman, B.S.C.F.A.

“The agreement prior to 2015 it was a joint partnership system. It was a joint partnership model. It was a joint partnership contract agreement with the mill. These changed in 2015. The ownership of the cane was transferred to the mill when the cane is weighed at the scales. But what happened with the payment system – it remained the same. We still have the risks of any loss and you can recall that there was a loss of molasses in 2017 and because there was this issue of the ownership, we managed to recover that loss.”


Shawn Chavarria

“We certainly don’t agree with B.S.C.F.A’s rationale for wanting to change the existing cane payment structure because we believe that the information and everything that is shared is accurate, it’s verifiable. They get an independent audit of that, but we recognize that there’s a lot of negative conjecture from the B.S.C.F.A with respect to the Net Strip Value concept so we have agreed to look at a formula bases the sixty-forty gross value share and we have presented that to the B.S.C.F.A but they have also rejected that.”

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.

Advertise Here

Comments are closed