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Dominican Republic: Government to buy surplus bananas at 175 pesos per quintal

The Minister of Agriculture, Osmar Benitez, stated that after several negotiations with the Dominican Association of Banana Producers (Adobanano) the government had decided to purchase a quintal of surplus bananas for 175 pesos, 75% higher than they had initially offered.

The official said that this measure was the Government's way to support one of the main export products, which contributes about 300 million dollars to the national economy and generates about 32 thousand jobs in the areas where the crops are grown.

Benítez said: "We negotiated the purchase price with producers and decided to increase the initial value by 75% to support the farmers. We established that the export bananas will be purchased at 175 pesos per quintal and the associations committed to deliver them as if they were going to be exported."

He also said they would begin logistics work this week to start distributing and delivering trucks to the detachments, military posts and State entities, such as the Economic Dining Rooms, Social Plan, and Public Health hospitals.

The minister said they would use this method because of the facilities it has for the transfer and delivery work to the different destinations.

Salvador Estevez, the president of Adobanano, said that the State's measure gave producers a breath of fresh air and that the different associations had agreed to accept the price suggested by minister Benítez as it would benefit farmers.

The Government will buy about 120 containers per week from the export surplus that was not placed in international markets for around 18 weeks as a measure to support the subsector's stability. The banana industry in the Dominican Republic was affected from 2015 to 2017 by several natural phenomena that decreased the production volumes and the government aided the sector by injecting more than four billion pesos for the rehabilitation and rescue of the farms, especially in the Northwest Line, which was the most affected area. Five days ago, Adobanano expressed their gratitude for the Government's prompt action to provide assistance with the purchase of the banana surplus production.


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