Bacardi has disclosed plans to close its rum distillery in the Bahamas due to changes in trade agreements and competition.

The company said yesterday (23 August) that its Nassau plant, which manufactures Bacardi rums for shipment to Europe, will close by April 2009. The majority of its operations will be transferred to its Catano site in Puerto Rico as well as its other facilities across the US.

Bacardi Bahamas facility director Felix Mateo said: "The change in business conditions and economies of scale were significant factors in the decision to prepare to cease operations here in Nassau. It is very difficult to make a decision like this, but it is the right decision for the company."

Bacardi, which is privately held, also has facilities in Florida and Mexico. Its brands include the Bacardi rum, Grey Goose vodka and Dewar's scotch whisky brands.