NGOZI March 2nd (ABP) – Head of State Pierre Nkurunziza held a meeting in camera on Friday March 1st in favor of stakeholders in the coffee sector to assess the implementation of the recommendations from the meeting held in Ijenda on 23 November 2018.

According to the General Manager of the Coffee Sector Regulatory Authority (ARFIC), Mr. Emmanuel Niyungeko, the objective was to know whether the recommendations concerning the payment of coffee growers, communal taxes and the repatriation of foreign currency by the Coffee Exports Companies were respected for the 2017-2018 campaign.

Mr. Niyungeko said nine companies will not get the authorization for the campaign for failing to pay coffee farmers, communal taxes and repatriating foreign currency in time. RISCA Company has not been able to pay its cherry suppliers in Bururi, Bujumbura, Bubanza and Cibitoke provinces and its boss is being charged, he said.

According to the ARFIC Director, collaboration with other stakeholders including the judiciary and the anti-corruption police has made it possible to force irregular companies to comply with recommendations made in Ijenda.

For the 2018-2019 campaign, there will be a review of the coffee sector regulations, stakeholder awareness, rigorous surveillance of all those who will attempt to organize fraud or embezzlement of coffee products. ARFIC will continue to redress, or punish, anyone who tries to undermine the coffee sector.

Mr. Albert Nduwimana, governor of Ngozi province, said in his welcoming speech that coffee production over the last three years has increased by 27% in 12 companies and cooperatives with 29 washing stations operating in that province.

In an interview after the meeting, the spokesman of the President of the Republic Alain Diomede Nzeyimana said that this meeting revealed a novelty.

Companies bought the coffee but did not sell it, claiming that coffee prices fell on the international market. This is a huge inconvenience to the government. The Head of State recommended investigations to clarify the situation.

The Head of State also proposed the establishment of a national coffee day to thank those who have worked well and encourage others to perform.

He insisted on an education of all in order to understand the importance of coffee, which provides the country with foreign currency for the purchase of various items imported from abroad.

The meeting was attended by the Permanent Executive Secretary of the National Security Council, the various stakeholders of the coffee sector, the leaders of the associations, cooperatives and washing companies and coffee exporters.

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