Sugar production expected to increase by up to 2m tonnes: FBR

Spokesperson says surplus amount could have earned $1bn if govt had lifted export ban

LAHORE: The Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR) has predicted an increase of 1.5 to 2 million tonnes in sugar production during the upcoming crushing season, citing better growth of the sugarcane crop due to monsoon rains.

In this regard, an FBR spokesperson on Thursday said that the country will have 1.2 million tonnes of sugar at the start of the next crushing season, recalling that sugar mills produced a total of 1.2 million tonnes of excess sugar in the last season.

He said that monsoon rains have caused a growth of 10pc in sugarcane crops this season, which will result in increased sugar production, adding that people will have to bear the burden of the excess production if the government does not export the sugar.

The spokesperson added that precious foreign exchange could have been earned if the government had not decided to ban sugar export. “The government could have formulated a strategy to export the surplus stocks in phases to inject over $1 billion into the national exchequer,” he added, lamenting that the ban was retained despite having a surplus stock of 1.2 million tonnes.

He suggested that the government should allow mills to export sugar with sending 500,000 tonnes in the first phase.

 

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