Home News GAWU maintains GuySuCo’s statement erroneous
The Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) is maintaining that the recent Guyana Sugar Corporation’s (GuySuCo’s) announcement about a decrease in the world market price for sugar is another attempt to create another sad story and launch further assaults on sugar workers.
In critiquing the announcement, GAWU said the GuySuCo statement failed to tell sugar workers and the Guyanese public that the world market is a residual market and is far from being reflective of true cost of production globally.
“The world market price remains what it is because every sugar-producing nation offers their respective producers some form of State-support, which tends to lend to some over-production. Such government assistance is premised, among other things, on the employment directly and indirectly supported by those industries. It seems only in Guyana that we have failed to recognize this noteworthy fact,” a statement from the union said on Thursday.
GAWU further noted that GuySuCo’s sales to the various markets are contractual and are negotiated between the Corporation and the respective buyers. It noted that GuySuCo received between US5 and US0 per tonne of sugar it sold to the Tate and Lyle through the European Union (EU) arrangement. GAWU also maintains that prices to the US, Caricom and local markets are even higher than what obtains in the EU.
While GAWU accepts that the EU reforms will pose some difficulty, the union believes that the Corporation is also well aware of other remunerable markets that it could exploit.
“Moreover, the recent registration of the Demerara Sugar and Demerara Molasses as Geographical Indicators, and work to secure the protection of the brand in Europe offer the Corporation good opportunities for higher prices,” it added.
“Speaking about the volatility of the sugar markets also calls to attention the need for the Corporation to diversify its operations into other areas, such as electricity, alcohol, packaged sugar and refined sugar, as recommended by the Sugar Commission of Inquiry (CoI) and shared by our Union and others. We found it interesting that while GuySuCo is shedding crocodile tears, we saw a news article about the interest of several “reputable” companies who are considering investing in the sugar industry. It is indeed a strange coincidence that both stories appeared not too long after each other. Maybe it is just coincidental, or maybe it is a case of there being more than what meets the eye”, GAWU has said.
GAWU President Komal Chand told <<Guyana Times>> on Wednesday that the union estimates the international price for a tonne of sugar at US$12.77; and if GuySuCo’s production is calculated by tonnage at US$12.77, it would result in a greater income for that corporation. He said this figure is based on the international market prices and reports from Czarnikow Group Limited, a company that provides sugar market services to sugar producers, consumers, and processors in the United Kingdom and internationally.