Gov’t supports ECGC purchase of ‘Ju-c’ bottlers

KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent – The government has instructed its representative on the board of directors of the Eastern Caribbean Group of Companies (ECGC) to support the firm’s bid to purchase Bottlers (St. Vincent) Ltd.

Bottlers, makers of the soft drink “Ju-c”, remains closed almost one year after Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves said last June that they were scheduled to reopen in last August.

He told a press briefing Tuesday that company owners had said that they would have recommenced operation last August because of a partnership with a Trinidadian entity.

Gonsalves said “Ju-c is a household name, … an important product” and a company in which the owners have invested.

He said he met Sunday with one of the firm’s shareholders and his lawyer and informed them of his instructions to the state’s director at ECGC.

Gonsalves further said that Osmond Davy, chief executive officer of ECGC, had informed him of the company’s intention to invest in Bottlers.

The government owns 20 per cent of ECGC and Gonsalves said that he agreed in principle to the move.

“I understand that the persons involved and their auditor in Bottlers Ltd. have made a presentation to the board of ECGC and there are some additional data which the board, and in particular one set of shareholders from ECGC, had requested,” he said.

“And I want to repeat that I am supporting the purchase of the shares,” he further said.

Eustace calls for severance payment

Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace on Monday said that after almost one year it is time for former employees of Bottlers to be given their severance pay.

“I have been making some inquiries into the matter and it is something that needs to be dealt with,” he said.

“It is far too long now that this is outstanding …” he further stated, adding that some persons worked for the company for 30 years.

“Now is the time to deal with the workers. In fact, it has passed the time when they had the hope that the company was reopening last year August,” he further said.

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11 thoughts on “Gov’t supports ECGC purchase of ‘Ju-c’ bottlers

  1. Such acquisition falls into place with the ALBA intiatives.

    Posted by Peter | May 16, 2012, 13:06
  2. The PM is not an economist and knows nothing on financial matters. Everything he touches turns to dust. RIP Ju-c, another Vincentian lost.

    Posted by blane | May 16, 2012, 13:27
  3. I wonder if ECGC supports the GOVT purchase of the JUC building?

    Posted by Joe | May 16, 2012, 16:08
  4. Here he goes again…Everything this guy wants to invest in..turns to salt.

    Posted by Observer. | May 16, 2012, 16:16
  5. I had special responsibility for receiving, cataloguing, and filing our institutional documents, such as published laws, official gazettes, etc., some years ago.

    When the politicians came with the Arrowroot Industry Association bill, passed into law, I knew that that was the death-knell for the ARROWROOT INDUSTRY and loudly proclaimed such. Later on, I was tasked with visiting the AGRICULTURE MINISTRY to research and interview high level personnel preparatory to a scripted defence and last-lap appeal on Arrowroot’s behalf. The phoenix-esque appeal met with widespread acclamation, particularly with the NYC and electronic media, and helped to revive some effort for a further elongated period. But, still further overwheening political control and shenanigans eventually all about squelched the lifeblood out of this intrinsically VINCENTIAN agro-industrial heritage.

    When the politicians came with the BANANA INDUSTRY Bill and finally passed that into law, again I solemnly warned that this, too, was the beginning of the end for the highly prosperous BANANA ENTERPRISE. Put this together with the heedless over-reliance on imported, highly expensive, potent, artificial chemical fertilisers in the industry. Even fairly recently the MAN GAO warned of its drastic, killing, effects on our natural wildlife, in his song, THE SPRAY PLANE. Hence, I wasn’t shocked when it was reported to me that the BANANA INDUSTRY HAD BEEN WIPED OUT BY DISEASE. The disease is but one obvious symptom of politico-governmental mis-management of the industry. If the BLACK SIGATOGA or the MOKO diseases did not DECIMATE THE INDUSTRY, then the stiffling political interference would have, also. Just like ARROWROOT.

    I was a bit taken aback that it was to ISRAEL that we turned for help to agronomically RESCUE the SVG Banana Industry. Yes, to a FREE ENTERPRISE, REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY. The infamous communist fair weather ‘friends’ were of absolutely NO HELP to us or our Banana patrimony, then. Yet, last December the Copycat chose to diplomatically spit in their faces. And, Papa Doc’s baby dipper even tried a commie credentials ‘ting with them in NYC. Ingratitude must surely be the very greatest sin, seeing that it is so very widespread nowadays.

    We badly need to CEASE OUR UTTER DEPENDENCE ON THIS MONO-CROP ECONOMY. As from three or four decades ago, we need to no longer put all our agricultural and economic trust in delicate Bananas which are highly susceptible to the slightest wind, much less to our annual Caribbean HURRICANES which have been returning to their normal meteorological virulence. This is nationally suicidal. It is a sign of near political insanity.
    Our silly foreign policy, blindly signing on to any and every ‘integration’ measure, has treated bound us to be consigned to a diplomatic corner – – – where we find ourselves contractully impotent to do our own independent national bargaining for our SVG interest, economic benefit and agricultural/industrial products. Hence our hand-wringing in face of the international/world banana market. Similar for other crops or manufactures.

    Presently, especially in light of the PLANT DISEASES EMERGENCIES, we need to let much of the affected land: LIE FALLOW, REST, BE BURNED IN CONTROLLED PATCHES, and/or be ROTATED WITH OTHER [new, old] CROPS, for at least one, two or three years. We are playing with even greater national disaster, otherwise.

    These are not in any way new, radical, or revolutionary measures. All these sorts of information are to be found lying on the shelves or in the storage cupboards, and library, of the AGRICULTURE DEPARTMENT. I have “run” these ideas by trained agricultural personnel, including the professional instructors or past ministers of agriculture. They are usually in agreement, though reluctant to rock the organizational or political boats of the status quo. Many older farmers had continually warned about these farming dangers, for years.

    Then, the tragic former neglect to effectuate even piece-meal diversification away from/ or supplementary to BANANAS, or meaningfully develop the non-agricultural sectors, would now economically tie our hands in DRAMATICALLY DEALING WITH THE CRITICAL MELT-DOWN. Who will bell the nation-destroying cat ?

    GIVEN the tragic SVG stories of ARROWROOT and BANANAS, I see nothing but ultimate economic-financial FAILURE for both the FLOUR INDUSTRY and, now, the uniquely Vincentian JU-C enterprise. The destructive virus of POLITICAL INVOLVEMENT, CONTROL, and INTERFERENCE would absolutely ensure their demise.
    Whereever these corrupt inept politicians put their grubby politically patronizing paws, the targeted enterprises eventually fail.

    Don’t just consider this political law of nature with regards to Banana and Arrowroot. Look elsewhere. COTTON ? The COTTON GINNERY of SVG’s acclaimed SEA-ISLAND COTTON production was MALICIOUSLY BURNED DOWN IN A POLITICALLY MOTIVATED FELONIOUS ACT OF ARSON.
    Consider how we mostly lost the coconut industry. Did you see what they did to flour and the price of bread? No, not just recently, but years ago also. Do you really know or remember what a “six cents” bread really look like?

    The corollary holds. Should the patronage-prostitutes keep their corrupt political noses out of the objective, rational, normal operations of either JU-C, or the FLOUR INDUSTRY, or both, THEN it, or they WILL survive. BUT, NOT OTHERWISE. The same edict applies to our badly needed LIAT Airline and air transportation in and out of SVG. Any time the politrickans step outside their area of functionality, and endeavour to ‘run’ and ‘control’ other enterprises in the society, usually for ever more access to political largesse, then those profitable enterprises decline, fold and go under. Don’t blame the messenger. Look to the existing Vincentian and Eastern Caribbean reality. Currently, or historically.

    I wont say any prayers for my religiously, famously, favoured JU-C. You can hold your breath, if you want.

    These ‘smart’ politicians write these grevious lessons of experience time and again – – – YET they seem unable or unwilling to act on the serious consequences that are so blatantly obvious. So, our SVG and Eastern Caribbean people continue to needlessly suffer. Purblind SHORT-SIGHTEDNESS ? Well, maybe . . .

    Friends, surely the adage remains : Where there is no vision, a people fail.

    Posted by STEVE_ HUGGINS | May 16, 2012, 23:15
  6. How many government bonds has ECGC invested in at the behest of the government? time to tell the people.


    told you so

    Posted by Peter | May 18, 2012, 19:14

    BLANE, I can’t get on with this new name that you have given him.

    When Gonsalves was asked which is his favorite JU-c, he replied “the red one, the taste doesn’t matter as long as its red”

    In fact Gonsalves is so attached to JU-c that he bought the building, now he’s buying the firm. That’s what you call true Brand Loyalty.


    Posted by Peter | May 20, 2012, 08:21
    • ahah Do your thing. You could call him Walt Disney or not but that doesn’t change the fact that the man like to talk cartoon things. Yea but i guess you’re right, Walt Disney was smart and use to pay his workers. Not like this man SVG is burden with.

      Posted by blane | May 20, 2012, 19:01
  8. See how I am battling to give him the due respect.

    Posted by Peter | May 20, 2012, 08:22
  9. Things are so BAD in SVG, according to the LOONY SUPPORTERS of the NDP on this BLOG, that one of the FINANCIERS of the NDP, CK GREAVES and COMPANY, is EXPANDING their BUSINESS.

    Here is a LINK to their NEW SUPERMARKET on the LEEWARD SIDE of the ISLAND…close to the 5 STAR RESORT that the NDP and their FANATIC SUPPORTERS claim was a PHANTOM PROJECT.

    It seems like the GREAVES are getting WEALTHIER under this ULP GOVERNMENT.

    Posted by VINCYPOWA | May 20, 2012, 19:05
  10. DESPITE all the threatened harassment, obstruction, and repression, VINCYPOWA ? That goes to show that you still really can’t keep a good man, or company, down?

    ULP regime involvement in the JU-C enterprise will sound its definite death-nell and demise.

    Posted by STEVE_ HUGGINS | May 23, 2012, 01:38

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