Saint Lucia’s Commerce Minister, Emma Hippolyte, has said that there’s no shortage of brown and refined sugar on Island, although this country has been faced with ‘periodic delays’ in the importation of bulk supplies due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our suppliers have indicated that there is a global freight situation – the containers to ship the commodities have a longer turnover time and in some cases, the shippers are overbooked. As a result their ability to ship on a timely basis has been affected,” Hippolyte, whose portfolios include Manufacturing, Business Development Cooperatives and Consumer Affairs, said in a statement on Friday.
But she explained that notwithstanding the delays, the ministry wishes to assure all its stakeholders that there is no shortage of refined and brown sugar.
“We are simply managing our stock on hand to allow for the even distribution to our customers. To this end we are seeking the assistance of all retailers to manage the sale of both refined and brown sugar to ensure that consumers do not engage in panic buying,” the Minister said.
She noted that the ministry is optimistic that the regular supply of sugar will be available by month end and is doing all in its power to ensure that the supplies are on Island.