A post-dated cheque on a failing bank

Fiji Sugar Corporation (FSC) Limited yesterday announced a forecast price of $62.70 per tonne of cane for the 2014 season.  We all know the harvest won’t be over before the elections and no-one knows how much the FSC can really afford to pay.  But that doesn’t matter.  They’ll make the promise now and hope they can pay.  For seven years we’ve been watching the sugar industry running down hill faster all the time.  Production is half what it was before the coup.  Bainimarama promised to make up for the aid from the EU he threw away because he refused to hold an election but farmers have seen none of this.  Like Gandhi said of the British promise of independence when the war with Japan was over, this is a post-dated cheque on a failing bank.

Fiji Sun May 11, 2014 FSC Forecasts $62.70 Per Tonne Sugar Price

23 Responses to “A post-dated cheque on a failing bank”

  1. Mukesh Says:

    Fair price per tonne of cane should be an excess on $100 per tonne, any cent lower is funding defunct FSC and keep employing people like Seru Vularika, Military man Manasa, and puppert CEO Meanwhile Sundresh Chetty is cashing his cheque warming chair of CEO of SCGC, growers organisation who until now do not have any real data as to how much cane would effectively produce one tonne of sugar, nor how much is the cost of a bag of fertilizer.

  2. Anita Says:

    Mukesh, where in the world do you get $100/ ton.

    In fact, in most places is much lower than in fiji as we are getting a premium price over the world market price.

    As for the forecast price, this is normal as has been the case for ages where fsc announces a forecast price ahead of the crushing season.

  3. Mukesh Says:

    Anita, it seems you are very green in sugar industry like green cane. The sugar industry has been made so complex by the leaders that Cane Growers Council themselves have not idea so how could you understand. I challenge you to do a simple analysis that is to find out why farmers are still paying the same fertilizer price which was set up when the world market price was all time high, now the price has been dramtically reduced, almost half.
    Tell Bainimarama and his group that building roads, hospitals, and electrifying rural communities will not solve problem, but having an effective system would move the country forward, such as health. At present the only MRI scanner in the country is out of order and no sign of getting fixed, people are dying. What a joke this idiot has done to the economy. God Save Fiji

  4. The Sugarman Says:

    @ Anita

    Mukesh is right; you hardly know nothing about the industry. For cane farmers to receive a reasonable amount of return, an excess of over $100 per ton would be acceptable. Remember last year, illegal PM Voreqe made it a spectacle to announce a forecast price of over $80 per ton. Where is he today with the reduced forecast price of $62.70? The farmers now know they have been fooled once again. Mukesh is also correct in talking about Seru Vularika who should have retired five years ago but is still the GM Field Services because he was Bhainimarama’s classmate. This guy was almost fired many times before and he was not even a field officer. It is beyond reason when more experienced staff were bypassed, and some who were younger than Seru have retired soon after reaching 55 years. I think Seru will continue working in FSC as long as his pal Bhainimarama is the boss. No wonder FSC cannot produce half of what it used to do in pre-bhainimarama days. The sugar industry is doomed!!

  5. kaput Says:

    Broke sugar cane farmers won’t vote Fiji First.

  6. Mukesh Says:

    Thank you sugarman for your kind comments. It is pity that Sugar Cane Growers Council, the body representing cane farmers, since inception has no real data that could be used to challenge Fiji Sugar Corporation’s data. The Master Award forcefully deduct percent from growers proceed to the SCGC and leaders enjoys hefty salary, perks, and overseas trips. The current CEO Mr. Sundresh Chetty, who has no formal qualification, enjoys 6 figure salary and other perk. It is pity that in fighting and corruption within FSC and SCGC has slowly destroyed a futile industry with no sign of recovery.

  7. Anita Says:


    I don’t know from which planet you are but the reason the forecast sugar cane price is lower is because the EU is reducing the premium due to pressure from WTO due to complain by Aust, thailand and Brazil.

    Last year the price was higher as world sugar prices rose due to lower production in key production countries due to weather conditions.

    By the way, the reason for sugar production declining is because convict mahen and his pal Felix killed the industry by holding the industry to hostage. Also convict mahen fooled the farmers by telling them he will take them to argentina, paid them $28k and also told them to stay as in refugee camps. He collected money on their behalf and kept the $ millions in his sydney bank account.

  8. kaput Says:

    Get it right Anita.

    The phasing out of the preferential protocols started in 2007 with the implementation of the restructure funding process for all states covered under the Cotonou process.

    Fiji was disqualified because of the coup d’état in 2006. Hence lost $FJD300 million grant together with the technical specialists needed to implement the restructure of the industry.

    Instead the FSC entered into a series of loans (both local and offshore) to fund a restructure program with private contractors from India which as we all know has been an abysmal failure.

    The net result of that failure is the FSC is today loaded with debts for a botched restructure which has not produced any value added outcomes save to load the whole industry with the burden of paying the debt off.

    Other sugar countries covered under Cotonou who have not breached the protocol by having a coup d’état have all drawn down on their respective grants from the EU which has allowed them to transition in preparation for the coming in of the phase out.

    The EU had no choice but to implement the phase out because the WTO rules are contravened by the current preferential protocols.

    Come 2017 Fiji will have to compete at international market prices just like anyone else for a quota access to the EU and given the current abysmal structural conditions of the FSC that is a foreboding thought.

  9. anita Says:

    Kaput aka Sugarman

    The $300 million has got nothing to do with the sugar price.

    You just like your master, MPC. A convicted criminal distorting the truth.

  10. kaput Says:

    The current world sugar price is 322 pounds per tonne Anita.

    In Europe (EU) it is 320 pounds per tonne.

    Those are the prices as of last week.

    Suggest you inform yourself before posting.

    As for current access

    On the London futures exchange the rate is $USD488 per tonne. You can go to the website:


    Sugar-man is talking about $100FJD per tonne.

    The real reason why sugar returns to the farmers has dropped in Fiji is because the FSC is up-to its eyeballs in debt and has transferred that to the farmers by deductions from what should be going into their pockets.

    That has led to the inability of the farmers to raise their production because input costs have been driven by that high debt loading of the FSC, with the net outcome of drop in sugar production.

    End result we now export 65% less sugar then we did in 2006. And it now shows in our domestic exports figure for 2013 which when even after accounting for the 20% devaluation shows a 900 million or so domestic export value which in today’s money terms is less then the 900 million we domestic exports we exported in 1999.

    Update yourself Anita.

    No point trying to personalise the issue. I am not Sugarman.

  11. joe black Says:

    foo big debate happening here

    but the reality is the indians with no lands want to plant and sell some produce

    but the natives want to suck some grog and wank

    so what happens to fcs and farmers??

  12. basic Says:

    Incidentally that high input cost is also the reason why even with CBUL re-opening up farm lands (which had been unutilised since 2002- 2003) for sugar production there is minimal uptake.

    Whilst those farmers who are on the land have transitioned to other crops and are now in default of the non derogation provisions under their ALTA leases, which specifies that they plant sugarcane.

    In fact that is one of the issues facing the ILTB. Farmers who are sitting on ALTA lands issued for the purposes of sugar-farming but who are not farming sugar, and instead doing other things.

    Farmer Hari Pal Singh is using his economic sense. He probably never went to Class 8 at the local Primary School and only rose to Sardar, but at he least understands that you will not make any profits if the cost of producing sugar cane is more than what you will make in revenue from the FSC.

  13. The Sugarman Says:

    It is evident in Anita’s futile attempt to justify the miserable sugar industry’s very poor state of affairs that she is a regime stooge. She blames people like MPC and Felix Anthony for all existing problems. Can’t you see Anita that the downward trend of the sugar industry started in 2006 when Bhainimarama took over? In all the years MPC and Anthony were part of the industry, there never was a year like what is currently experienced. I understand it could have improved under their watch, but it is nothing compared to what it is now. All along the sugar industry has survived because of the EU generous preferential treatment of the Fiji Sugar industry. Once that assistance stopped because of Bhainimarama’s arrogance, everything went downhill. With all the debts FSC is in, I will reiterate, the sugar industry is doomed!! And I am not kaput.

  14. kaput Says:

    Basic economics. Theory of capital and principle and interest.

    Increasing the Leases available to sugarcane farming doesn’t address that fundamental issue of the FSC being loaded with interest on debts it isn’t able to pay (hence why it is in technical insolvency and seeking the Indians to defer payments) because that interest is simply being loaded onto the farmers via fiscal adjustments the FSC is constantly making to meet the weight of that loading.

    This is what the EU policy makers accounted for and when they framed that technical grants program for Cotonou States under the sugar protocol back in 2006 in relation to the transition to the phase out in 2017..

    The EU by that grant process sought to CAPITALISE the transition for each of the Cotonou states.

    And it was in the form of a grant precisely because an interest loading had it been a debt structured assistance would not have helped the Cotonou states but only added cost onto their restructure programs and thereby adversely impacted the transition policy to the detriment of those Cotonou states and specifically the farmers
    which the EU wanted to help during the transition process

  15. Mukesh Says:

    You need to get your facts right. It seems that your are against MPC. But you do not realise how much MPC had done to the nation and sugar industry. With regards to the money that MPC is having in Australian bank, it seems that your father had given the money to him. It must be noted that this money was raised in India for MPC to settle in Australia, but typically MPC unlike other cowards, he opted to be loyal to Fiji. I do not have to elobrate more about other leaders such as Rt Mara, Rabuka, Bainimarama, Khaiyum whose wealth have grown significantly after entering politics. I have heard no individual calling agaist these culprits to expose their overnight wealth. Anita, I suggest you to do your home work on sugar industry before writing nonsense. MPC will always to a “True Son to Fiji” and because of this the cowards are doing everything possible to tarnish his reputation

  16. anita Says:

    Kaput aka basic aka sugarman

    First the premium on sugar price paid by EU.

    You are correct that the price last week is the same. Did you check the price 10 or 5 years ago. Fiji was getting approx 50% more than the world marke price. Now you can do your own calculations what a 50% reduction in price means to the value of exports of sugar. Hence, the reduction in sugar exports has been affected by price. If price falls, revenue for farmers fall. So what’s the incentive to plant sugar. Its further compounded by the strikes by felix and convict mahen.

    The reduction in sugar price has nothing to do with what we produce or the coups. Its all because of WTO.

    Didn’t mahen killed the sugar industry by giving indian farmers $28k to move out of farming. Instead of giving the money to renew leases, he pushed farmers away.

    I also suggest that you relook at the number of strikes in the industry over the last 15 years. You will find a strong link beteen strike by the farmers and the mill workers in all the years SVT or SDL govt in place.

    It was also convict mahen who got the exim bank of india loan and the us$80 million has gone down the drain. Maybe, he got a cut as well. The late deepak Rathod made some interesting revelations.

  17. kaput Says:

    The prices fluctuate according to variables that affect worldwide production and more specifically Australia, India and Brazil’s outputs.

    What the preferential protocols provide for is duty free access for ACP sugar producing countries into the EU.

    In 2004 the price of a tonne of sugar was 160 Euros per tonne, however the duty was 471 euros per tonne. And that duty was paid by the non preferential access countries (i.e not covered by the ACP Cotonou Agreement) or the EBA protocols.

    But the sugar prices were lower 10 years ago.

  18. anita Says:

    Kaput aka basic aka sugarman aka nfp (not fit for parliament)

    Pls google google again.

  19. kaput Says:

    No need to google, just go to the EU website and look up ACP and sugar.

    The figures are there.

    You can also check the ACP website.

    Facts Anita, not propaganda.

    And I am not Sugar-man. That is not my handle.

    I use two handles on this site : “kaput” and “basic”

  20. The Sugarman Says:

    @ Anita

    Regardless of your defence of this illegal regime, the cold hard facts is that sugar production is at an all time low. It is not even at 50% of pre-coup levels. In all the strikes MPC or Anthony were involved in, the cold hard truth is that FSC still made profits during those years. And by the way, those strikes took place because the country was led by democratically elected people, and workers of the sugar industry exercised their democratic rights under the collective agreements. The sugar industry is doomed!! And I am, once again, not kaput.

  21. anita Says:

    The facts of the sugar industry is that Mahen and felix killed the industry. Pls go check the financial performance of FSC since 2000.

    Mahen also killed the industry by paying indian farmers $28k. This is a fact. He did not work with tltb and land owners so the lease was not renewed.

    Mahen also kept the A$1.5m which equate to approx F$5m today including interest for his ownself when it was for the farmers.

    Felix and PDP will be lucky to get 1% of total votes cast. FLP and NFP will get just around 2-3% each.

    Moce to FLP, NFP. Tata

  22. Sugar Boy Says:

    Anita you are sick and dumb. Nothing more to say

  23. The Sugarman Says:

    @ Anita

    Everything in the sugar industry nose-dived from 2006 onwards. That’s why from 2006 until now the FSC has not produced any annual report because it has not made a single cent of profit. Who are you trying to fool? The sugar industry is doomed!!

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