Changes to refined sugar importation regime announced
Agriculture and Commerce Minister Karl Samuda this afternoon announced changes to the regime on the importation of refined sugar.
Samuda says the changes were being made to stop the sale of duty-free refined sugar for the manufacturing industry from being sold on the retail market.
Currently, manufacturers are allowed to import refined sugar for use in their operations duty-free.
The commerce minister says going forward permits to import refined sugar will be handled by the Sugar Industry Authority (SIA).
Only approved marketing agents or other entities approved by the ministry can obtain a permit.
Retailers and distributors of refined sugar will no longer be able to obtain a permit.
Instead, they will be required to buy their supply of refined sugar from marketing companies.
Samuda said SIA will be restricted to a quota for refined sugar that can be imported.
He said Jamaicans consume an estimated 10 thousand tonnes of refined sugar and the quota will be based on this estimate.