Industry comes together to discuss Green Paper and deregulation
The Agricultural Competitiveness Green Paper and deregulation were the big ticket items discussed at the fourth meeting of the Agricultural Industry Advisory Council in Sydney today.
Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, said it was important for the council members to have the opportunity to discuss the policy options put forward in the Green Paper.
“This group is made up of real leaders in their respective industries, so it’s vital that they have a chance to come together, consider and discuss the options in the Green Paper. It was a good opportunity for me to hear which ideas will make the most difference in the future,” Minister Joyce said.
“We are working hard and having success.
“As a nation, we need a competitive and innovative agricultural sector, one that brings greater return back through the farmgate, expanding export and trade opportunities, to strengthen our rural and regional communities—and this is what we want to explore in the Green Paper.
“Council members were closely consulted in developing the Green Paper, and their feedback will be important in determining the issues industry want prioritised in the White Paper.
“We put forward a range of policy ideas on infrastructure, drought support, trade and finance and today we got valuable feedback from people at the forefront of their respective industries.
“Everyone has the opportunity to have their say on the Green Paper and I strongly encourage people to do so.”
Minister Joyce also said that reducing regulatory burden on farmers was another priority discussed at the meeting.
“This in many cases calls for further action from state governments,” Minister Joyce said.
“Agriculture is one of the five key pillars of our economy, and we need to make sure our farmers aren’t bogged down in unnecessary regulation and red tape—that’s where deregulation comes in.
“I asked the council members to give their advice on priorities for deregulation in their respective industries, to see if we can find gaps and areas for more reform.
“Deregulation is a big priority for the Coalition Government and we are committed to getting it right. We want to make sure our farmers get the best farmgate return possible without unnecessary costs and constraints.”
The Agricultural Industry Advisory Council brings together council members from a wide range of agriculture, fishing and forestry industries to discuss and inform government about key issues impacting these sectors.
The council was established as part of the Australian Government’s 2013 election commitment to enhance consultation with Australia’s agriculture sector, and is set to meet again in early 2015.