And at today's forum the Prime Minister also spoke about the standoff in the citrus industry.

The Citrus Products of Belize plant unilaterally opened one week ago - and the Citrus Growers Association announced that its members would be suspending deliveries - and protesting against what they hold is an illegal, unauthorized opening of the factory. More than that, the CGA says it stands to lose millions of dollars - if it accepts the price unilaterally declared by CPBL. Well, dialogue with the government and on the price has been ongoing, and tonight the news is that the CGA is relaxing its hardline, its farmers are on line to start deliveries - after productive dialogue.

A release sent out this evening says that, quote, "representatives of the CGA had a very positive meeting with the Deputy Prime Minister & Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Gasper Vega," end quote.

It adds that the meeting discussed, quote, "the transformation of the industry along with the buying out of Banks Holdings Ltd. shares in CPBL."

Today at the business forum, the Prime Minister announced Government's support for that:..

Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize
"Public sector effort is currently underway once again, we know you perhaps would not have believe it the way some people were behaving, to assist the players in the citrus industry to sort out their issues. Now withstanding the efforts of some carpet baggers and Pharisees to exploit the genuine concerns of citrus growers and to try to place citrus growers at odds with government - I am happy to report that there was a meeting yesterday between the Deputy Prime Minister as Minister of Agriculture, the CEO Jose Alpuche, who of course continues as well to enjoy our complete confidence. That meeting went very well indeed, I see Mr. Eugene Zabaneh in the audience and I want to commend him for the extremely constructive role he played in having that meeting proceed as smoothly as it did."

"Upshot is I am able to say today in confirmation of what Deputy Prime Minister and Jose indicated yesterday that the government of Belize fully supports the efforts of the CGA in conjunction with a new strategic investor to purchase the shareholding of Banks Holdings Limited in CPBL."

Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize
"If the money is raised, if the new strategic partner comes in and Banks Holdings exits clearly there will be a new relationship; there will be a new paradigm in the industry. CPBL will not only be majority owned but will be operationally controlled by CGA and their new partner. The atmosphere which gave rise to this continuing deadlock and dispute would have been eliminated."

And while Government's support surely does bolster the Citrus Growers Association, it is likely to incense the large growers who account for almost half of the fruit deliveries. Their group is called Belize Citrus Mutual - and going forward - as the control shifts to the CGA - if it does shift - the animosity between large and small growers is likely to also increase.

Recently much of the animosity from the CGA has been directed at the Government for not interceding in their dispute with Banks Holdings.

The PM discussed this today and made plain his complete exasperation:..

Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize
"To suggest that I was remaining aloof from what indeed is a private quarrel is to fly in the face of the fact that I attempted with no success to try to pour oil on trouble waters. There is a point beyond which I can't go if bog people are going to act like spoil children."

Jules Vasquez
"Is it the opinion of the government that the CGA should be dismantled? We know about the Slusher email that's been circulated."

Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize
"I am sure you read the email, I cannot understand for the life of me how that email could have been interpreted as prescribing the dissolution on CGA. What the email was saying is that because CGA is an organization not and incorporated entity - if God forbid there should ever come a time when for whatever reasons; bankruptcy, creditors foreclosing, CGA would have to be dissolved - that we must think of ways to ensure that the assets can be safeguarded by way of an orderly dissolution. It is not prescribing that there should be a dissolution. How people get from that to suggesting that the email was prescribing or wishing for the dissolution of CGA - I will never be able to understand. If you have a problem with what you think Mr. Slusher is saying by way of advice to the government - he is my personal advisor - come to me, don't run off half cut and create a great big brouhaha when the truth is so straight forward and absolutely innocuous."

And while the CGA made the PM "hot", a press release sent out this evening seems aimed to cool him down. It says, quote, "We thank the Hon. Prime Minister and his Government for supporting this initiative and look forward to collaborating closely with Government to transform the industry."

Channel 7