Guyana’s Sugar industry facing problems to get workers: President Irfaan Ali

Guyana’s President Dr Irfaan Ali met with residents in the Crabwood Creek community on Thursday, addressing various national and local issues, including the revival of the sugar industry. Responding to a resident’s concerns, Dr Ali highlighted the challenge of securing the necessary workforce.

Despite the government’s efforts to rehire several workers retrenched by the previous APNU+AFC government, Dr Ali noted that the sugar industry still faces a significant labour shortage. “Right now we need workers. We are not getting the workers we need,” he said, urging residents to submit names of potential candidates for employment with the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo).

Due to the labour shortage, the government is expediting mechanization in the industry. Additionally, efforts are underway to install a new management team, including hiring a new Chief Executive Officer for GuySuCo and returning 5,000 hectares of land at the Skeldon Estate to production.

“We are rebuilding the industry… we brought back thousands of jobs, paid severance to workers,” Dr. Ali informed the residents. The government has also reopened the Rose Hall Estate, one of the estates closed by the former APNU+AFC government. Although last year’s crop was below expectations due to prolonged dry weather, Dr Ali expressed optimism about the first crop of 2024, with the industry anticipating 100,000 tonnes this year. “We came back and invested in the industry and rehired workers because we know sugar is viable,” he added.

Earlier this week, the first group of 21 Cuban engineers arrived to assist GuySuCo with its revitalization efforts. Furthermore, the government has allocated $6 billion in the 2024 National Budget to enhance GuySuCo’s production and operational efficiency.


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