14 Feb 2009

Sugar aid report rejected by NZ agency

7:08 am on 14 February 2009

NZAID has rejected reports from Fiji that it's provided around $US1 million in assistance for the sugar industry there.

Fijilive has reported that the New Zealand Aid Agency is preparing a relief package to help the industry.

It quotes Sugar Cane Growers Council chief executive, Surendra Sharma, as saying he has written to the Australian and New Zealand Governments, and the European Union seeking assistance for an industry he describes as dying a slow death.

He says New Zealand responded favourably with a $US1 million facility.

But NZAID denies the reports.

An agency official says New Zealand has provided nearly $US2 million in flood relief for Fiji, but has made no commitment to support the sugar industry in Fiji or the Fiji Sugar Cane Growers Council as part of flood recovery work.