Grupo Buena dominates duty-free import of food in Guatemala
Despite the announcement from the Government that they would open the quotas to the cooperatives, one of them got only 1.98% of the 120,500 metric tons of food.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Last May, the Government of Alvaro Colom announced with great fanfare that it would free up the food import quotas, and that these would be administered by the cooperatives in order to promote competition and to provide consumers with the benefits of duty-exempted products.
The agri-industry is requesting an import quota of 660,000 quintals of rice, farmers will only accept 240,000.
The agreement will come into effect on August 1, making 75% of industrial goods duty-free immediately and the rest within 5 to 15 years.
Because of a shortage, authorization has been given to the importation of 119 thousand metric tons of paddy rice and 20,150 metric tons of milled rice, duty free.
Grain importers are complaining that the study to determine the shortage was made in June and the government has still not signed the decree allowing duty-free imports.
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