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Farmer anxiety builds on carbon tax

15 April 2011

Farmer anxiety builds on carbon tax

The National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) today reinforced the farm sector’s position over the Government’s carbon tax plans, highlighting the industry’s opposition to any proposal that places their competitive position at risk.

“The NFF’s members have been rightly voicing farmer’s dismay over the impacts of a carbon price on their ability to compete on international and domestic markets, even with agriculture’s direct emissions being excluded from the scheme.” NFF President Jock Laurie said.

“The reality is that a carbon price works by sending a signal to consumers to reduce their usage of energy and energy dependent products such as fuel, fertiliser and machinery – all vital inputs to farming businesses.

“Compensation for low to middle income households will not cover these additional energy costs for businesses, leaving farmers, as price takers in the market place, feeling exposed.

“The NFF realises that to date, scant details have emerged about the Government’s carbon tax design, particularly surrounding the critical issues of transport fuels and food processing.

“For many farmers, options to reduce their exposure to these energy related costs or to attain offsets are limited or non-existent, despite the claims within some sections that farmers will be the big winners in this debate.

“We will work with the Government in good faith to mitigate the risks from these and other issues but this does not detract from our position that we will not support any policy that hurts Australian farm businesses.”

[ENDS]

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