Department of Trade, Industry and Competition
The Sugar Industry Master Plan has been signed.
In a joint statement, the agriculture, land reform and rural development and trade, industry and competition departments announced that “industrial users and retailers have agreed to minimum off-take of sugar for a period of three years; with at least 80% of sugar consumption to come from South African farms and millers during the first year, increasing to 95% by 2023”.
The departments added that the sugar industry has also agreed to price restraint and to restructure the industry “to help diversify revenue sources”.
“The sugar master plan seeks to take urgent action to protect thousands of jobs, rural livelihoods and businesses, and at the same time create a bold new ambition for the future, which seeks to create diversified revenue streams for sugar producers, and deliver significant new job opportunities.”
According to the trade, industry and competition minister, Ebrahim Patel, the Master Plan “represents a new social compact based on dialogue, shared ownership and wide support. The sugar master plan aims to significantly diversify the value chain based on sugarcane away from one that is today almost solely focused on the production of raw and refined sugar, into one that in future produces a wide range of globally competitive sugarcane-based products”.
In June 2020, the sugar industry was granted an exemption from the Competition Act by the Competition Commission in order to support the economic development, growth, transformation and stability of the sugar industry in line with the objectives of the Master Plan.
Meanwhile, the portfolio committee on trade and industry seeks comment on nominated candidates for Chairperson of the National Lotteries Commission Board.
The committee needs to make a recommendation to the minister on the preferred candidate.
Comment on the three nominated candidates is invited until 24 November 2020.