KIGALI - Despite the government allocating a huge chunk of land to Madhvani Group, the proprietor of Kabuye Sugar Works, it is still not producing enough sugar, Prime Minister, Bernard Makuza, has said.
Makuza was appearing before members of the Lower Chamber of Parliament this week.
“Madhvani was given 2,035 acres of land, which is about 65 percent land. However, there is one side that cannot be used due to the fact that it’s completely waterlogged,” he said.
Makuza said that the factory is currently using 150.000 tonnes of sugarcane, 90.000 of which are produced by farmers and 60.000 from the factory farms.
Makuza said that to date, 3,308 tonnes of sugar consumed in Rwanda was imported adding that Madhvani can only produce 13.000 tonnes of sugar, making only 31 percent of the sugar consumed by the entire nation.
He informed the lawmakers that currently, the factory has the capacity to produce around 20,000 tonnes, but the government was doing everything possible to increase the capacity of the factory to enable it to produce 43,000 tonnes.
The limited sugar production is believed to be the reason behind the recent increase in sugar prices on the local market, which KSW management attributes to the rise in sugarcane prices from Rwf13,000 to Rwf15,200 per tonnes.
To beat the emerging deficit on the local market, Kabuye Sugar Works is importing up to 1,200 bags of sugar from their sister company, Kakira Sugar Works in Uganda. The deficit is also covered by imports from Zambia, Malawi and Kenya.
The factory owned by the Madhvani Group largely depends on supplies from out-growers cultivating on over 2,200 hectares, which administrative officials say leaves the factory’s future operation uncertain.