Wilmar representatives met with Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen in Canberra on Tuesday.
Wilmar representatives met with Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen in Canberra on Tuesday. DAN PELED

Mackay's sugar stalemate makes a move in Canberra

ANOTHER step was taken on Tuesday in the ongoing sugar marketing stalemate.

After legislation was passed last year to guarantee growers choice in how their sugar was marketed, Queensland Sugar Limited and Wilmar have needed to create an on-supply agreement.

After trading blows about delays in negotiations, Wilmar representatives met with Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen in Canberra to push discussions forward.

Mr Christensen said the meeting went well, with negotiations moving quickly.

"Wilmar gave every indication they were going to arrive at an agreement with QSL and be able to offer choice in marketing for growers very soon," Mr Christensen said.

"We expressed to them our urgent view of the situation and that we wanted to see a resolution, in the form of an on-supply agreement, sorted out before Christmas, with a swift move to offer growers a choice in marketing thereafter.

"However, Wilmar did assure us that they were moving rapidly toward an on-supply agreement with QSL, as evidenced by the recent breakthroughs in the negotiation process."

An on-supply agreement would allow growers to choose QSL to market their sugar even after Wilmar milled it.


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