Belize Sugar Industry Set for Transformation: Minister Mai Discusses Future Changes
The agreement signed between the BSCFA and BSI has signaled a new era in Belize’ Sugar Industry, according to Minister of Agriculture Jose Mai. The minister is one of five parliamentarians who are cane farmers, and he believes the recent impasse has highlighted the need for changes to the Sugar Act. Last night, Mai spoke from the standpoint of a farmer and shared his views on what’s next for one of Belize’s most important industries.
Jose Abelardo Mai, Minister of Agriculture: “I think that it’s the beginning of a new era. I think that much energy, much study, much research has been done since I became Minister of Agriculture. We really there is a lot of work has been done, still ongoing and I think by the end of my term I would like to see that we have a modern Sugar Industry Act. I think for a farmer we are just passing through, the farmers are getting old every day but there are young people who will pick up the slack and then it’s important for when we leave that these people don’t have the same problems that we are going through. So I think it’s our obligation. It’s our responsibility to ensure that we have a sound act that when we leave the industry behind or when I leave being the minister that there will be something that the youths can hold onto and continue allowing the industry to be the economic driver for the region.”
Vejea Alvarez, Love FM: Do you see it as a victory ?
Jose Abelardo Mai, Minister of Agriculture: “I see it as a victory for farmers. I see a victory for BSI. I see a victory for the industry.”
Mai says the government will be working diligently to establish the commission of inquiry as soon as possible.