The Government has given an undertaking to take over all debts of the Sugar Company of Jamaica (SCJ), to allow the company to strive for profitability with its new thrust on efficiency, improved farming practices and improved production.
Chairman of the SCJ, Robert Levy made the announcement at a luncheon on the grounds of the Frome Sugar Factory in Westmoreland on January 31, following a tour of the facilities by Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Honourable Professor Kenneth Hall and Mrs. Hall.
The Chairman said that when he was first asked to take over the leadership of the sugar industry, on viewing the available facilities within the industry, his first thought was that it would take a miracle to get the industry moving.
“Maybe the first and most significant(miracle) is that I got a letter from the Minister of Finance about four weeks ago, saying that he undertook to take over the full indebtedness of the Sugar Company of Jamaica, and that is a great undertaking,” he said.
Mr. Levy noted that the transformation in the infrastructure at the Monymusk factory, improved production levels at the Frome factory and the decision of the Governor-General to visit the Frome factory on his first visit to entities within the productive sector, were encouraging signs for the industry.
The Chairman said that he was upbeat about the future of the sugar industry with all major debts out of the way, adding that the timing of the gesture was very important, as it has given the SCJ an opportunity to move forward.
He pointed out that with the debts cleared, the SCJ should be back to profitability by the end of the 2008/2009 sugar crop. He urged the workers at all levels within the sugar industry to continue to give their committed and dedicated service to the industry.