Measuring the Competitiveness of Sugar

Competitiveness is important for Jamaica's agriculture and specifically sugar, as the instruments of protection are gradually being removed. Sugar producers and sugar interests in Jamaica are concerned that one day they may not benefit from the present preferential agreements for sugar sales to the European community and the United States. A new agreement reached in the year 2000 with the European Union extends Jamaica's preferential treatment to 2008. The study used two indicators namely: "Relative Quasi-tents" and Nominal Rate of Protection" to measure competitiveness. Results of this study suggests that 92% of the farms with 3.3 hectares or less of sugar realized modest quasi-rents that were only about 1.6 times the opportunity cost of owner-operator labour. The comparable figure for producers of 16 hectares of sugarcane was 7.3 times the opportunity cost of owner operator labour. Nominal rates of protection estimated here for the 1990-2000 period indicate that domestic producers have been receiving prices for sugarcane that are about two times the equivalent free market world prices. This is a result of the country's preferential marketing agreement with the European community and the United States. The study points out that Jamaica's sugarcane yields are low, the sugar content of the cane is low, production costs are high and cane ills are currently inefficient.

Issue Date:
Jul 09 2002
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
Record Identifier:
Total Pages:

 Record created 2017-11-29, last modified 2018-01-23

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