Caribbean Sugar Association Supports Belize In Trinidad And Tobago Trade Dispute
Posted: Tuesday, November 9, 2021. 6:00 p.m. CST.
By Aaron Humes: Last week, the Caribbean Court of Justice reserved its ruling after two days of testimony and argument in an initial jurisdiction case between Belize and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.
The latter is accused of not having applied the common external tariff (CET) on brown sugar entering Trinidad and Tobago from extra-regional sources in violation of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas (BTI).
In a statement, the Caribbean Sugar Association (SAC) said it congratulated the Belizean government for bringing the case to court. He alleges that the practice “has dramatically diluted the value and demand of the CARICOM market for regional sugar producers.”
The Belize legal team led by Senior Counsel Andrew Marshalleck presented evidence of over 4,000 metric tonnes of imported sugar minus the CET, which would represent 40% of the value of cost, insurance and freight (CIF) extra-regional sugar, particularly from Guatemala.
Sugar cane production is not only literally sweet to the region, according to the SAC, but also contributes to climate change – it is a major sequestrator of carbon but also the source of green and renewable electricity generation throughout the region. , as seen with the BELCOGEN factory in Belize.
The SAC said, “The protection of the brown sugar market, as set out in the BTI, is a small contribution to maintaining the viability of this industry and which, according to the SAC, should be strictly maintained and enforced. “
Commenting on Belize’s decision not to seek compensation for the lost opportunity in the regional market, SAC President R. Karl James said: Many decisions of COTED are being followed. Otherwise, the CSME would have very little relative value to any of its members. “
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