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Foreign canecutters

Conan Hatch, Nadi Airport
Friday, February 02, 2018

In a recent news article, the hardworking Yogesh Karan had mentioned that there is a possibility of bringing in foreign canecutters to address the shortage of local canecutters.

The article went on to state that Mauritius had done something similar with great success thus implying that Fiji can imitate this with similar success.

I beg to differ and request that this proposal be shelved.

Mauritius's demographics are quite different from Fiji and importing large numbers of low-skilled workers could drastically change the social landscape of Fiji and increase societal ills if not handled properly.

This looks like the proverbial putting the cart before the horse.

In recent years the land harvested for sugar in Mauritius more than over 70,000 hectares with sugar produced at about 600,000 tonnes.

But in Fiji, land harvested for sugar was only about 40,000 hectares with an average sugar production at about 190,000 tonnes.

We need to increase the land available for sugar production with a corresponding increase of sugar production before we even jump to solutions that make no sense.

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