CEFS Press Release - Sugar manufacturers disappointed with Council agreement on sugar

Published: 03/20/2013, 3:47:33 PM

(Brussels, 20th March 2013) Following the Agriculture and Fisheries Council, CEFS (Comité Européen des Fabricants de Sucre) is deeply disappointed with the Council's agreement on a General Approach to prolong the Single CMO for sugar until 2017 rather than 2020.

"Last week the Parliament sent a clear message to the Council - prolong the Single CMO for sugar until 2020 - I am disappointed to see the Council did not take this on board and call on those involved to ensure this is rectified in the trilogues" said Mr Marihart, CEFS President, after the Council's announcement.

"The 2006 reform resulted in the closure of 83 factories (one in two) and the loss of more than 22,000 direct jobs - this should not have been in vain. We are becoming more competitive but we need more time. We are simply asking for stability and predictability for five more years. This is not a long time in such a capital intensive industry."

Nonetheless CEFS welcomes the Council and the Parliament's maintenance of the current refiners' privilege, as well as the Council's decision not to include an increase in the quotas. CEFS does not support a reallocation to those who relinquished their quota(s) in the previous reform, nor does it support an increase in isoglucose quotas in certain member states. This would go against the 2006 reform which aimed to balance the market.

Looking forward, CEFS recognises the hard work that has been done and understands the need to ensure that the CAP is adopted and implemented in a timely manner. Nonetheless, Europe's sugar manufacturers need a workable and reliable solution, not an agreement for the sake of an agreement, and insist that the prolongation of the Single CMO for sugar until 2020 with no change to the refiners' privilege, as voted in the Parliament on 13th March 2013, and no increase in quotas is still feasible - for the sake of the sector as a whole.