Sugar target exceeded for first time in 11 years

The Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) as of yesterday had surpassed it 227,443 tonnes of sugar production target by 300 tonnes for the first time in 11 years.

Chief Executive Officer Errol Hanoman was optimistic that the second crop would exceed 150,000 and the annual production would surpass 230,000 tonnes, the Government Information Agency said. Three estates—Albion, Rose Hall, and Enmore—are expected to continue operations until December 21.

Hanoman was reported as saying this was the beginning of the “improving trend of the corporation, but it can only be maintained if the union, the workers and management work together,” while he thanked workers for their contributions.

GINA stated that the second crop target was 146,300 tonnes of sugar and production was 146,583 tonnes.

Meanwhile, sugar workers pointed out that their calls for wage increases and Annual Production Incentive talks were being ignored by the sugar corporation.

A cane harvester from Albion told Stabroek News that he and his colleagues were languishing while GuySuCo was bragging about reaching its target. Yet another cane harvester from the same estate told this publication that the corporation was disregarding the contributions made by the men working the field as he said that without the physical labour, grinding would not be possible and the target would never have been met.

President of the General Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) Komal Chand said

that while the union and GuySuCo met again on Friday last, Chief Labour Officer Charles Ogle is to get back to both sides after engaging with Senior and Junior Ministers of Social Protection Volda Lawrence and Simona Broomes on the way forward.

Chand had previously told Stabroek News prior to the December 11 meeting with the Labour Officer and GuySuCo that he believes the corporation is stalling until the end of the current crop, after which the issues will roll over to 2016.

“Obviously they would like to stall and drag out the negotiations. The crop will come to an end and the workers will not be able to engage in strike action in furtherance of their just claims. That is their [GuySuCo] strategy all the time. They had three bilaterals with us [and] they haven’t moved,” he stated.

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