Export of sugar to Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago was the subject of separate and successful bilateral discussions between Minister of Foreign Trade and International Cooperation of Guyana Clement Rohee and his counterparts from the two sister CARICOM countries, K.D Knight of Jamaica and Kenneth Valley of Trinidad and Tobago. These discussions took place during the just concluded Special meeting of the CARICOM Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED), which took place in Georgetown, Guyana, 1-4 September 2003.
The meetings, facilitated by the Secretary General of CARICOM also involved representatives from the Guyana Sugar Corporation and the Sugar Association of the Caribbean.
Shortfalls in sugar production in Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago have increased the need for shipments of sugar from Guyana to these countries to assure supplies to their domestic markets. Guyana has readily agreed to accelerate arrangements to meet these shortfalls.
Agreement was also reached for Jamaica to be granted a waiver for importing one shipment of 2800 tonnes of sugar from outside of the Region to meet a temporary emergency.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Minister undertook to investigate reports that sugar from Colombia has been imported into Trinidad at below market prices. Such a practice would affect sales from Guyana and run counter to settled CARICOM policy.
In pursuit of the CARICOM objective that all sugar consumption needs in the Region be met by sugar produced in the region to the full extent that sugar is available, Guyana has been rapidly expanding sales to Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago as well as to other CARICOM countries. Sales of sugar to Jamaica have increased from 15,700 tonnes in 2002 to a projected 24,000 tonnes in 2003 and to Trinidad and Tobago from 25,600 tonnes to a projected 49,000 tonnes in 2003. Total sales to CARICOM destinations have climbed from 71,000 tonnes in 2002 to a projected 96,000 tonnes in 2003.