Posted: Thursday, May 31, 2018. 5:15 p.m. CST.
By BBN Staff: Yesterday, Santander Sugar Ltd issued a statement saying that it regrets the actions that led to the cease and desist letter issued by the CEO in the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Commerce, on May 18.
The company also apologized for the regrettable situation.
Santander says that recent developments in the Euro Zone relating to the abolishment of sugar quotas in October 2017 have negatively impacted the price of sugar received by Belize based sugar companies.
“Santander Sugar Ltd. investigated other sugar markets and concluded that the CARICOM market in its entirety could be the savior of the Belize sugar industry,” the statement asserts.
According to Santander, for Belize sugar companies to compete in this market, a restructuring of factories had to take place, and the old product of raw sugar destined for Euro Based refineries, had to be replaced with products that could be marketed in the CARICOM region.
“A considerable investment was made to restructure the Santander Sugar Factory to produce, edible brown and white sugar. This is an investment in the country for the Belize sugar industry to survive.”
An amendment to the EPZ was filed in February and while waiting for acceptance, Santander began to explore market opportunities within CARICOM.
“ We failed to realize that we needed an additional waiver for the local markets and apologize for this oversight,” the company says.
The company informed that they appointed a sole agent within Belize to explore local markets.
Santander says that a limited quantity of 204 MT of white sugar and 12.5 MT of brown sugar was sent to the distributor to test these markets as a market survey.
The company says that they received favorable feedback from the sugar.
This marketing survey regrettably was conducted prior to the approval of the new EPZ that had been submitted.
The company now assured that Santander Sugar Ltd. will comply with all local authorities and recall all the sugar that has been distributed so far.
Santander Sugar Ltd reaffirms its commitment to uphold all of the country’s laws and procedures.
Through their statement, the company also requests that the amendments to the submitted EPZ be reviewed at the earliest convenience and a waiver be granted so that they can continue their marketing efforts within Belize and the CARICOM region.
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