Government is keen to improve sugar production not only in Vanua Levu but throughout Fiji, says Minister for Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management Hon. Inia Seruiratu.
Minister Seruiratu was in the North last month, accompanying the Hon. Prime Minister on a tour of the Division.
“In Vanua Levu, Labasa Sugar Mill used to crush more than 1.2 million tonnes of cane every year and that is the focus and our target. Although it is not going to take one or two years, but that’s the long term project because once Vanua Levu is back to that production level, it will mean a lot of benefits and ripple effects down to the members of the communities and of course the business communities as well,” Hon. Seruiratu said.
During the tour, the Hon. PM’s delegation met with ordinary Fijians, including some sugarcane farmers and members of landowning units involved in the joint venture with the Fiji Sugar Corporation for the utilisation of their idle lands for sugarcane farming.
“The joint ventures between landowning units and FSC are good because majority of our farmers have resources but they don’t have capital and the machineries, they lack mechanisation and technology so with the joint venture, it has brought a lot of improvements in agriculture production and of course it will have an impact on our livelihoods as well.”
The delegation of Cabinet Ministers led by the Hon.PM also listened to concerns raised by sugarcane farmers during their visit to a joint venture in Nasarawaqa.
“It’s good to see the development that have progressed in Vanua Levu particularly in Government’s commitment towards the Look North policy. Government is just ensuring that no one is left behind because we need to build together a better Fiji for all Fijians and that once again is why we’re here,” Hon. Seruiratu added.