Govt focuses on exportable distillery products in sugar mills

The government is planning to run the state-owned sugar mills round the year through the production of diverse products, including export-oriented distillery items, aimed at making the sugar mills profitable, reports BSS.

“Through sugar canes, the 15 sugar mills can produce sugar only for three months while the rest of time the mills remain idle. But, the authorities have to pay the salaries of officials and labourers and continue other related activities round the year. So, the cost of per kilogram (kg) sugar rises to around Taka 150,” State Minister for Industries Kamal Ahmed Mojumder told BSS.

Now, a total of 15 sugar mills under the Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corporation are running and of those, only Carew and Co (Bangladesh) Limited can make profit due to its distillery unit. Kamal Mojumder said the government has taken initiatives to make the sugar mills profitable within the next one to two years.

“We have taken a move to keep open these mills round the year and even during the off-season through producing white sugar from imported raw sugar. We are also going to take initiatives to produce export-oriented distillery products in the sugar mills,” he added.

In this regard, he said, Industries Ministry is sending concerned officials abroad for gathering knowledge on product diversification of the sugar mills.

Kamal Mojumder informed that the distillery products will produce from molasses for exporting to the other countries.

Talking to BSS, Chairman of the Bangladesh Food and Sugar Industries Corporation Ajit Kumar Paul said Saudi Arabia, Japan and Thailand are showing interest to invest in the country’s sugar mills.

“Saudi Arabia wants to produce bakery products in the Mobarakgonj and Natore Sugar mills while Japan has proposed setting up distillery units in different mills. We have already singed memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Saudi Arabia and Japan. We are focusing on distillery factories for making the sugar mills profitable,” he added.

He informed that the demand of Carew and Co (Bangladesh) Limited’s distillery products is very good among the foreigners in the country. “The distillery products of the Carew and Co (Bangladesh) Limited is handmade. If we can modernise the factory, it will be more profitable,” he added.

He said the government is focusing on distillery products for running the sugar mills round the year and making a good profit.