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KINGSTON Oct 4 (Reuters) - Three companies from Brazil, the United States and the Bahamas were identified on Thursday as among those short-listed in a bid to take over Jamaica's state-owned sugar factories.
The government said Infinity Bio-Energy IBI.L of Brazil, Flo-Sun Inc. of the United States and Stirling Partners of the Bahamas were on the list of eight companies in the running to take over the five state-owned mills.
Jamaica's agriculture minister had released the names of the other five contenders on Tuesday. They are Coimex of Brazil, Dhampur Sugar Mills (DAMS.BO) of India, Trinidad & Tobago's Angostura Ltd and Jamaican companies Energen Development and Wray & Nephew.
A negotiating team of Jamaican business leaders is evaluating tender proposals from the short-listed companies and is expected to recommend the most qualified bidder by March 31.
Jamaica's five state-owned factories have accumulated losses of $227 million over the last 25 years and the government said that it could not continue to subsidize them.
Jamaica produced 162,000 tonnes of sugar by the end of the 2006-2007 harvest last month, falling 5,000 tonnes short of its production target.