NATIONAL Farmers Union general secretary Mahendra Chaudhry says 2010 could be the worst year in the history of cane farming in Fiji.

In a statement issued to the Fiji Times yesterday, Mr Chaudhry said the problems facing the sugar industry reflected the ineptitude and inefficiency of the Fiji Sugar Corporation management.

"We lost $100million last year because of the FSC's incompetence and this year we will most probably see the worst-ever result in the history of the sugar industry in the country," he said.

"Farmers in the sugar industry are incurring unnecessary expenditure and losses because of the continued incompetence of the FSC management.

"While farmers are going through unprecedented difficult times and hardships, the FSC and the Government have resorted to having a series of meetings.

"Meetings will not resolve issues facing the industry. Close to 200,000 people's livelihoods depend on the sugar industry and something concrete needs to be done because the sugar industry is going down the tube," he said.

Mr Chaudhry said problems at all FSC mills dire-ctly affected farmers, who lost the most from continued stoppages."Nobody knows the reality of these issues like the farmers themselves," he said.

FSC had earlier said it was woprking to rectify problems at its mills.

source: fijitimes

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