While sugar imports are theoretically liberalised in Senegal, the government has decided to block imports on account of the difficulties faced by the national company producing sugar (the Compagnie sucrire sngalaise CSS) in marketing its production.
With domestic consumption of around 140,000 tonnes and a production of 90,000 annually, Senegal has to import about 50,000 tonnes each year to meet consumption needs. However, with falling global prices, local traders have been increasingly importing sugar, creating a situation where CSS is having difficulties in selling some 42,000 tonnes of its sugar production.
In 2013, the company should have achieved increased production from 90,000 tonnes to 140,000 tonnes. However, a land dispute held back the planned expansion.
Press reports note that the situation on the local market has led the government to implement a framework between the CSS, the ministry and traders to discuss and fix the periodicity for imports and avoid situations of slump in sales, due to sugar imports at a production period. The blocking of imports is aimed at solving the current market difficulties facing CSS, although this will take some time (an estimated 4 months), given the current level of imported sugar on the market. The government has adopted these short-term measures in view of its longer-term aspirations to meet its national sugar consumption needs from national production.