Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves has described as painful, the recent rise in the prices of both white and brown sugar, which he was informed of via a letter from the Agricultural Input Warehouse.
According to the Prime Minister, the price hikes could see white sugar rising to $2.40 per pound and brown sugar $2.05 per pound.
“The last white sugar shipment was purchased in June 2022, at a price of USD $640 per metric ton, CIF, that is to say cost, insurance and freight, USD $640 per metric ton.
The quoted price received for the next shipment of white sugar has moved from $640 a metric ton, CIF, to USD $1100 per metric ton, not cost, insurance and freight, FOB, Free on Board,” Gonsalves said.
The Prime Minister the proceeded to detail the rising costs associated with the brown sugar.
“For brown sugar, the current contract price from the Guyana Sugar Corporation, GuySuCo is $560 USD a metric ton, FOB, with the freight cost being $64 a metric ton.
Unofficial communication from the Guyana Sugar Corporation has indicated that they are unable to supply us with a regular shipment until November 2022. So the Input Warehouse contacted Belize Sugar Industries for assistance; but their price is not $560 FOB plus $64 per metric ton, which would be $624, which would include the freight; they are asking, in Belize, for $832 a metric ton, cost insurance and freight,” he said.
Prime Minister Gonsalves said consideration will be given to the price raises at cabinet, to see how the Government can lessen the blow to the people of SVG.
One move that the Prime Minister said can be considered is the removal of the Customs Service Charge (CSC) on sugar. However he noted that this might only bring the price down by 10 cents per pound.
The Prime Minister said he is particularly concerned about price of brown sugar, as it is used by most people.