Barbados says it will not be producing sugar for the European market since it has become uneconomical to do so.
Instead, Agriculture Minister Dr David Estwick said that the island would be producing the commodity for local consumption and for the regional market.
"We are going to be producing our sugar for domestic consumption, and we are going to be producing our sugar for regional consumption, within the context of the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas and along with the other value-added products we are looking at," he said.
Estwick said it costs BDS$4,100 (one Barbados dollar = US$0.50) to produce a tonne of sugar, which is then sold to Europe for BDS$980.
"That is bad maths. I am not therefore going to support it," he said, adding that Cabinet has approved plans for a new multi-purpose factory that will transform the sugar industry.
Officials said the factory, which will cost an estimated BDS$400 million, will produce specialised and refined sugar as well as refined molasses geared to producing quality rum.
It is expected to be established by 2016 and the authorities said they have been holding talks with a number of investors, including those in China.
Estwick said he has been holding discussions with stakeholders on the way the sugar industry is being managed. "We have recognised that having three distinctly different institutions running in parallel managing the industry makes no sense," he said.
"This cannot set a direction and a future for an industry. Therefore, my proposal is that I will be moving with great speed to have the by-laws of the Barbados Agricultural Credit Trust (BACT) evaluated," Estwick added.
"This will see if it can take on the responsibility of purchasing the shares of BCIC (Barbados Cane Industry Corporation), so that the BACT would have responsibility for both BAMC (Barbados Agricultural Management Company), the agriculture side of cane production, and BCIC, the factory side of cane production, so that it can be properly managed from one entity.
"I believe in going that way we will be setting the framework to effectively transform the industry and move it forward," said Estwick.