29 Jan 2008

Questions over performance of Fiji sugar mills when new season starts in July

11:35 am on 29 January 2008

The Sugar Cane Growers Council says the mills may not operate well again when the new season starts in July.

The mills closed last season with an estimated 60 tonnes of cane still growing in the field.

Jai Gawander, the CEO of the Council, says a project, under a US 56-million dollar loan to the Fiji Sugar Corporation, is at least 2 years behind schedule.

"I think the progress so far has not been satisfactory. I assume things will start moving this year I think the project really got off its feet in the last couple of months after being almost stalled for almost a year and a half."

Jai Gawander says it will likely be 2010 before most of the work on the mills is completed.