Cash-strapped GuySuCo gets $600M to pay wages and salaries

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Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha

The Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) will receive some $600 million from the Government to assist with the payment of wages and salaries for employees.

This was according to Agriculture Minister, Zulfikar Mustapha on Sunday, who also stated that $120 million is required weekly to fulfil the payment of salaries.

Previously, it was reported that due to the financial state of the entity, the Corporation will not be in a position to pay wages from the week ending August 21.

Minister Mustapha on Sunday said the move by the PPP/C Administration is in keeping with commitments made in its manifesto to revamp and reopen those sugar estates which were closed under the previous APNU/AFC Government.

The Agri Minister confirmed that the sum was among others approved by Cabinet and has received the green light by both President and Vice President of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, His Excellency, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali and Dr Bharrat Jagdeo respectively.

Minister Mustapha also relayed that as part of its capital works, GuySuCo will be required to submit a report which will take into consideration the reopening of closed sugar estates.

Additionally, immediate infrastructural works are expected to begin at the Mahaica Mahaicony Abary-Agricultural Development Authority (MMA-ADA) Scheme.

Following a proposal made by the subject Minister, Cabinet has approved $90 million to aid in this regard.

Under the APNU/AFC Administration, the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) had stated that it was unable to pay workers their wages and salaries for July as it is still awaiting a disbursement of $750 million from Government’s holding company, the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL).

Prior, NICIL had disbursed $250 million to the sugar company which was used to purchase materials, fuel and execute maintenance at its three factories. Wages were also paid from the sum.

As a result, production for the first crop this year fell short by almost 9500 tonnes and the new crop was expected to start on August 1.

Meanwhile, after complaining about not being embursed by NICIL, GuySuCo was chided for resorting to petty disclosures and untruth in the press.

NICIL and GuySuCo have been at loggerheads for months over the $30 billion bond and control of the corporation’s assets.