Illovo Sugar (Illovo) has welcomed a reported call by Tanzania’s prime minister, Kassim Majaliwa, for Tanzania to increase its annual sugar production by 31% over the next four years.
Engineering News recently reported that Majaliwa’s office had said in a statement that government was determined to protect domestic sugar factories. This was to ensure an increase in sugar production with the aim of eliminating the need for imports.
Engineering News and Illovo said that Tanzania’s sugar millers currently produced only about 320 000t raw sugar annually, while the country’s annual domestic demand was around 420 000t. The deficit was currently being met through imports. Illovo, a 55% majority shareholder in Tanzania’s Kilombero Sugar Company (KSC), said that it would welcome any initiatives to bridge the current deficit.
“Our hope would be for the [Tanzanian] government to deliver on its existing plans to reorganise the [sugar cane] out-grower sector […]through increased yields and other horizontal growth initiatives,” Illovo spokesperson, Chris Fitz-Gerald, said.
In the Kilombero Valley, there were currently 17 separate sugar cane out-grower organisations supplying cane to KSC’s two factories in the area, he explained. Mark Bainbridge, KSC managing director, said that if government’s plans were implemented, KSC and its sugar cane suppliers in the Kilombero Valley would benefit.