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LAHORE: Pakistan Sugar Mills Association (PSMA) has reiterated their claim that ample stocks of sugar is lying in their godowns and if the coming crushing season starts without the export of surplus stock then the mills will be unable to hold the new stock of sugar.

The claim was submitted by the general body meeting of the association during a recently held meeting with the high-ups of Punjab Agriculture and Food Departments regarding the start of 2022-23 crushing season. The meeting participants included the representatives from the government, growers and the sugar industry. The meeting was told about the sugar recovery which stands at 4 to 6.5 percent in October.

A PSMA spokesman in a statement here on Thursday claimed that the PSMA members presented their issues before the meeting. All members jointly said that the sugar mills have ample stocks of excess sugar in their godowns. He said if the crushing season starts without the export of this surplus stock then the godowns of the sugar mills will unable to hold the new stock of sugar.

He added that the sugar mills are already selling sugar in the country but at the loss of billions of rupees because the cost of sugar made during the 2021-22 crushing season is approximate equal to Rs.90 per kilogram while the market rate stands at 78-80 rupees. In this situation, how can the new crushing season will start, he questioned. The meeting was told that the banks have increased the markup rate of 10 percent debt on the current stocks of sugar to 15 percent, which is causing financial loss to the sugar mills.

PSMA lobbying for sugar export

The spokesman demanded that the required finance, which the State Bank normally gives to the exporters, should also be given to all the exporters of sugar. The government should fix the credit which the sugar exporting mills normally gets and also give the rate of sugar export.

He further said that the disasters induced by the Climate Change are a global issue and the government of Pakistan should change its policies regarding this new problem to overcome the future challenges. The government should make the best decisions in the country’s interest otherwise it will be detrimental for Pakistan and its industry.

The sugar industry has appealed to the government to take stock of the situation and forthwith open the export of sugar in order to save the growers and the sugar industry from any crisis.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022


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