The European Union's former sugar-producing colonies have hit out at plans to offer aid to make up for EU subsidy cuts.

The EU plans to cut prices by 36% beginning in January 2006, which sugar producers from the African, Caribbean and Pacific trade group, the ACP, believe will translate into total losses in export earnings of US$300m a year. To soften the blow the EU proposed to give the countries €190m (US$228m) in aid a year from 2007 to 2013.

"Funding can never replace the value lost from trade and the €190m does not really offset that, offset what we would lose," Ian McDonald, executive director of the Sugar Association of the Caribbean was quoted saying today by the Associated Press.