The Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ms Nomalungelo Gina has reported that R400 million has already been spent as part of the R1 billion Sugar Value Chain Masterplan that was signed last year to the remedying of inequalities experienced by black sugar cane farmers and to breathe life into the sugar industry that had been ailing for a number of years. Gina said this when addressing the Trade, Industry and Competition Portfolio Committee, at a meeting which took place yesterday.

Minister Gina explained that the Sugar Value Chain Masterplan was established to create a diversified and globally competitive sustainable and transformed sugarcane based value chain that will actively contribute to South Africa’s economic and social development.

Through the implementation of the plan, last year saw a rise in local production and a decline in important sugar, creating stability for an industry which employs some 85 000 workers

“In this Phase 1 of the Masterplan, industrial users and retailers of sugar have committed to minimum levels of South African grown and produced sugar, equal to no less than 80% of need during first year, and increasing to 95% by the third year. To support this undertaking, sugar  producers have equally committed to price restraint during this period. Over the three-year Phase 1 period, the sugar industry will commence with a stabilisation and restructuring plan that will include among other things, development of diversified revenue sources for the industry, small scale grower retention, support and transformation,” she Gina.

She added that it should be ensured that financial benefits of the restructuring plan must be shared equitably and appropriately between consumers, users, refiners, millers and both small scale and commercial growers.

“I am excited that there is commitment to formalise the project management office, and that we are going to receive quarterly reports produced in progress, based on a weekly dashbard established. This will provide us with a clear line in sight in monitoring all efforts in meeting the targets as contained in the Masterplan,” said Gina.

Sidwell Medupe-Departmental Spokesperson
Tel: (012) 394 1650
Mobile: 079 492 1774
Issued by: The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition
Follow us on Twitter: @the_dti

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