Sugarcane growers biggest beneficiary of sugar export: PSMA The Association welcomes release of Inquiry Committee Report

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STAFF REPORTER
KARACHI Welcoming the release of the Inquiry Committee Report on Sugar by the Federal Government, Chairman PSMA Aslam Faruque said an open, fair and facts based discussion was exactly what the sugar industry wanted and that could not happen as long as the findings had not been disclosed. However, it was unfortunate that the minute the report was made public, media blew up the whole affair in the hunt for sensationalism. He requested the media that rather than focusing on personalities and always looking to play the blame game, they should study the report with good intentions and for benefit of the whole country. “It is clear that the Committee has done a lot of hard work in a short span of time but they are dealing with issues that are very complex and often older than our country itself. They simply cannot be understood in a matter of weeks” Mr. Faruque said, “While we were happy that the Committee heard PSMA’s introductory presentation on the industry, we wish they had come back and questioned us on the anomalies/queries they encountered before submitting their report as this would have made for a more fair and clearer report”. Mr. Faruque expressed his desire to continue working with the Commission which was taking a deeper look at the industry and requested that this time around, the Commission should allot more time to the association so there was no misunderstanding of facts. Pointing to the biggest anomaly of the report, he stated that on the one hand the report blames export for the rise in ex mill price of sugar from Rs.51.64 to Rs.63.59, on the other it clearly lays out that the cost of sugar at Rs.180/maund for 2018-19 of cane was well above Rs.63.59! How would the industry and the farmer have survived if the surplus sugar in the country was not facilitated for export and sugar prices stayed at levels that were barely enough to pay for the sugarcane?!