By BBN Staff: The Sugar Association of the Caribbean (SAC) is calling for Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations to place Common External Tariffs (CETs) on white sugar imported from outside the region to strengthen the regional market.
The SAC issued a statement this week explaining that most sodas and other sweetened drinks in the region are sweetened with imported white sugar as opposed to sugar from within the region, due to the arrangement which gave Caribbean sugar preferential treatment within the European Union. However, since that preferential treatment ended in 2017, Caribbean sugar producers have to sell their sugar at world market prices, which is not the case with any other sugar producer in the world.
“SAC is campaigning for a change in the trade rules for CARICOM governments to adopt as soon as possible the same approach as every other sugar-producing region on the planet, thereby creating the right market conditions for a sustainable and successful future for the Caribbean sugar industry,” the association said.
The SAC stressed that imposing the CETs on the imported sugar would strengthen the position of white sugar within the region and would allow investment in production to proceed and allow regional producers to focus on supplying the needs of their natural customers, which are manufacturers of products like lemonade and cola in the region who are the most significant buyers of white sugar.