Tuesday 20 August 2013
With less than three weeks to go before the federal election, we have released our election scorecard, which will be keeping track of how the major political parties stack up when it comes to committing to outcomes for agriculture.
The scorecard marks Labor, the Coalition and the Greens on their commitment to our key election priorities, based on each party’s capacity to deliver on their promises and their broader policy stance on issues affecting agriculture.
We'll keep updating the scorecard as new policies are released, and publish the final scores before polling day. As our President, Duncan Fraser said today, "“This scorecard is a guide to the respective parties’ commitment to agriculture and rural and regional communities. We need a government that will deliver a strong and vibrant food and fibre industry into the future."
You can find more detail on our election priorities, and download the scorecard here.
This week, NFF president, Duncan Fraser will be leading a delegation to the next round of Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, to be held in Brunei from the 24 - 30 of August. The delegation includes commodity representatives from pork,
The delegation will ensure that the needs of the Australian agriculture industry are well-represented during the negotiations, as they enter an advanced stage. Having been involved in TPP negotiations for some time now, we are dedicated to continuing to achieve the best possible trade outcomes for our farmers.
Last week, the Coalition announced a mobile phone coverage policy that would see an investment of $100 million in improving coverage in remote areas. The policy, titled 'The Coalition's Mobile Blackspot Programme', will specifically target coverage on major transport routes, in small rural communities and also in areas prone to natural disasters.
We have been calling for improvements to mobile phone coverage for many years, and are pleased to see the Coalition are listening to our concerns. On a farm, mobile phones are an integral part of both our businesses, and our safety. Working outdoors and often long distances from a landline, mobile phones mean that we can keep our business running from the paddock, and immediately access assistance if faced with any potential safety hazards.
For more, read the NFF media release here.
As the election campaign heats up, we're seeing more detail from all major parties about their policies for agriculture.
Last week saw the Government release their plan for northern Australia, which included a commitment of $10 million to the Northern Territory Government to help facilitate expansion of the Ord Irrigation Scheme for crops such as sugar. While we welcome the Government's commitment to developing ag opportunities in the north, we can't emphasize enough the need for a comprehensive and cooperative approach for such development to work. For more, read the NFF media release here.
The Greens have also announced their 'Our Food Future' policy, which outlines their plans for the ag sector. Whilst we support some of the measures outlined in the policy, such as a commitment of an extra $300 million in funding for agricultural research and development, the overall document is an adhoc approach to farming that demonstrates that The Greens don't truly understand the multiple and complex issues faced by the industry. For more, read the NFF media release here.
As more policies are announced, the NFF will keep representing the best interests of farmers, to make certain that agriculture remains a key priority this election.
The NFF AGvocate
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