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He said the second harvesting also looks encouraging and is confident the budgeted figure of 305,000 tons can be produced in 2003.
Webb attributed the 2002 achievement, so far, to the implementation of an agriculture improvement plan embraced by the industry, with the objective of improving agricultural efficiency by 30 per cent during the next five years.
"What we want to do is gain 30 per cent more sugar from the existing land under cultivation on every estate," he said in an interview.
Webb said that sales to the traditional regional market have expanded and a 10,000 tons deal has been clinched with Haiti, in addition to a 47,000 tons increased sale to Trinidad and Jamaica.
The South African former head of Royal Swaziland Sugar Company said, while the local business is making good strides in the region, the financial intake from exports to Europe has reduced because of the languishing Euro, in which currency Guyana is paid.
But Webb pointed out that the Euro is transient to the United States (U.S.) and Guyana dollar, both of which should facilitate the expected borrowing from an international lending institution.
The CEO said, although a small loss is budgeted for this year, a modest profit is anticipated, as well.
Reviewing the past year, which was a financially poor one because of the weak Euro (9.9 Euros =US$1), Webb said GUYSUCO forecasts a loss of G$1.2 billion, for the first time in a decade.
"This is the first occasion in 10 years the corporation would have suffered a loss. We were required to borrow G$2 billion to pay for the purchase of materials and salaries.
"In addition, we did not have enough money to pay our corporate taxes to Guyana Revenue Authority. Consequently, to date, $800M remain to be paid," he explained.
However, Webb expressed confidence that, with the strengthened Euro, arrears will be cleared and the projected US$110M expansion programme would go ahead.