The Government of Jamaica has agreed to temporarily take over the Long Pond and Monymusk sugar factories. The move is aimed at protecting the medium and small cane farmers and workers. These have been displaced due to the closure of the factories for the current sugar crop season.
Here in Trelawny, the Hussy family owned Everglade Farms still operates on a smaller scale, opting to process the more lucrative rum and ditching sugar. The community of Clark’s Town and its environs have been hit by this down-scaling.
From The Gleaner:
The Jamaican Government has now agreed to temporarily take over the operations of two of the country’s sugar factories.
Information Minister Senator Ruel Reid told today’s post-Cabinet press briefing that Cabinet has reviewed and agreed to an intervention strategy for the Long Pond factory in Trelawny and the Monymusk factory in Clarendon.
Senator Reid said the intervention is aimed at protecting the domestic economy and small- and medium-sized cane farmers.
He said Cabinet has given approval for the government-owned SCJ Holdings Limited to enter into an agreement with Everglades Farms Limited for it to operate Long Pond for three months.
The information minister said SCJ Holdings has also been given approval to enter into a sub-leasing arrangement for the Monymusk Sugar factory, subject to agreement with its owner COMPLANT.
He said SCJ Holdings will operate the sugar factory for the crop year 2017 under the agreement.
Senator Reid said during the crop year the owners of the sugar factory will continue to work with the government to find new partners to activate new revenue streams and resume operations of the factory in 2018.
Both sugar factories have been facing financial challenges.
Source: The Gleaner.