Jagdeo says re-opening sugar estates not financially viable but economically feasible
The People’s Progressive Party has promised in its manifesto to reopen four closed sugar estates if re-elected to office in March 2020, however, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has admitted that while this move will be economically feasible, it will not be financially viable.
“Sugar is still viable from an economic perspective and not necessarily from a financial perspective because of the multiple benefits that are associated with sugar,” Jagdeo said at his weekly press conference on Thursday.
He alluded to the sugar industry’s contribution to taxes, the National Insurance Scheme, the maintenance of drainage and irrigation among others.
“This is about people’s lives, their contribution to the economy,” Jagdeo said.
He referred to the economic feasibility study which his party had requested before the first estate was closed in 2016, noting that had it been done, the Government would have seen that closure costs more than keep the estates running.
The Opposition Leader stands with his party’s promise to reopen the Wales, Enmore, Skeldon and Rose Hall estates in the first six months after being re-elected to office.
General and regional elections are set for March 2, 2020.
The PPP/C has also promised to create 50,000 jobs which it said will include those which comes with the reopening of the estates.
The Opposition launched an excerpt of its manifesto last Friday and is preparing for a bigger launch in January.