IN THIS SECTION:
Farmers welcome Coalition’s strong ag commitment
29 August 2013
Following three days of agriculture announcements by the Coalition, the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) has today warmly welcomed the formal release of the party’s agricultural policy, which promises to allocate $147 million in funding to the sector.
NFF CEO Matt Linnegar spoke this morning from the NSW Farm Writers breakfast in Sydney, where Nationals leader Warren Truss released the formal policy.
“It is extremely positive to see the promises made by the Coalition to supporting Australia’s agricultural sector – it is a recognition of agriculture’s rightful place as one of the key drivers of Australia’s economy,” Mr Linnegar said.
“We have already strongly welcomed the Coalition’s promised $100 million for agricultural research and development, and the reinstatement of $2.2 million for native title respondent funding – both core asks of the NFF to the major parties in the lead up to the election.
“Today, what we have seen is an additional $15 million for market access, helping small exporters to meet the costs of trade; a commitment of $20 million to strengthen biosecurity and quarantine, particularly Australia’s response to pest and disease incursions; $8 million towards minor use chemical permits to increase access for farmers; and $2 million for agricultural education, helping to embed agriculture into the national curriculum.
“These election commitments are in direct response to the NFF’s five election priorities of growing Australian agriculture, investing in research, development and extension, increasing competitiveness and profitability, building a stronger workforce and balancing agriculture and the environment – and show that the Coalition is listening to the concerns of farmers and working to address the key issues facing the sector.
“We note with interest the announcement today by the Coalition that they will develop an agricultural White Paper, aimed at increasing the sector’s productivity and profitability. Given the work done by the broader agricultural sector in developing the Blueprint for Australian Agriculture – work that is continuing in implementing the Blueprint findings - we believe this would form an excellent guide to the development of the White Paper.
“We congratulate the Coalition on committing to these positive steps for the agricultural sector, and look forward to working with the party – should they win office – on embedding these promises into core policy, ensuring the benefits get to farmers on the ground,” Mr Linnegar said.
The NFF’s Election Scorecard will be updated post this week’s announcements, with the revised version set to be released on Monday 2 September. The Scorecard is designed to provide an assessment of each party’s demonstrated commitment to agriculture, to help farmers make an informed decision at next week’s Federal Election.
Media Enquiries: Ruth Redfern on 02 6269 5666, 0408 448 250 or
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