25 Feb 2009

Fiji cane growers regret interim regime's sugar body moves

2:24 pm on 25 February 2009

The vice chairman of Fiji's Sugar Cane Growers Council says he's disappointed the interim government didn't consult industry stakeholders before deciding to dissolve key sugar bodies in Fiji.

Cabinet is getting rid of the Sugar Commission of Fiji and Fiji Sugar Marketing, but will transfer the responsibilities of the Sugar Research Institute to the Fiji Sugar Corporation.

Kamlesh Kumar, who is also the Nadi district secretary of the National Farmers Union, says no one has asked farmers and cane growers for their opinion.

He says they fear they are being left out of major decisions that will affect their livelihood.

"Oh I think the government should consult involving all the stakeholders. They haven't interviewed most of the farmers. The farmers are the major players in the industry, and they will be affected the most. Cos when the reforms will come, the farmers will have very little say in the industry."

Kamlesh Kumar