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The European Union has handed over €6.5million to the Jamaican Government under the Accompanying Measures for Sugar (AMS) Protocol Countries, AMS 2013 Financing Agreement.

The funds were handed over by Head of the European Union Delegation to Jamaica, Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska, to Finance and the Public Service Minister Audley Shaw in late January.

Assistance under the AMS 2013 Financing Agreement supports the implementation of the Jamaica Country Strategy (2006-2020) for the sugar cane industry through the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries’ Sugar Transformation Unit in the sugar-producing parishes of Westmoreland, Clarendon, Trelawny, St Elizabeth, St Catherine and St Thomas.

The allocation is the first of two variable tranches under the AMS 2013 Financing Agreement. A fixed tranche of €7.07m was disbursed in 2014.

“The second tranche is expected to be disbursed in March 2018 in the sum of €15 million,” Shaw said, noting that the disbursement of this first variable tranche of €6.5 million “further aids the government’s mission to reduce the economic and social disparities of our rural areas by creating sustainable productivity increases to hundreds of people moving out of poverty”.

He said the specific objectives include a creation of a commercially viable sugar cane Industry by strengthened sector management, improved field and factory productivity; the development of the Sugar Dependent Areas to strengthen and support the improvement of living conditions in the Sugar Dependent Areas (SDAs) based on sustainable economic and social development.

Speaking at the handing over ceremony at the finance ministry’s Heroes Circle offices, Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Karl Samuda, welcomed the funds and noted that the programme has been pivotal in sugar-dependent areas.

International Sugar Journal

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