Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. yesterday said a law should be passed to manage the sugar industry and to make it more competitive.
Marañon noted that Dr. Peter Baron, executive director of the International Sugar Organization, had pointed out on Saturday that there is a bright future for the Philippine sugar industry but it must be more efficient to bring down its cost of production and be competitive.
The governor noted that in Australia, a farmer cannot cut his cane crop unless it is already mature, but in the Philippines standing crop is cut even if it is not ready, if an owner needs money to go to a cockfight derby.
Marañon said that, under the sugar law the sugarcane industry should be managed by the private sector.
The Sugar Regulatory Administration, tasked with regulating the industry, has no teeth, which must be given to it, he added.
Meanwhile, to shield Negros Occidental from a monocarp industry, the province, being the producer of about 65 percent of the country’s sugar, the governor said his administration has been pushing for the growth of other industries in the province.
He cited the growth of the swine, chicken and cattle industries in Negros Occidental.*CPG