Media Release

Australian and Western Australian governments working to deliver drought relief through loans

28 February 2014

Joint Media Release

The Hon. Barnaby Joyce MP, Minister for Agriculture
The Hon. Ken Baston MLC, Western Australian Minister for Agriculture and Food

Australian and Western Australian agriculture ministers met today to start work on making the drought concessional loans, announced by the Prime Minister on Wednesday, available to Western Australian farm businesses.

Minister Barnaby Joyce and Minister Ken Baston agreed to prioritise delivery of the new loans that will be available nationally to help farmers battling drought conditions.

Minister Joyce said the loans of up to $1 million, or up to 50 per cent of eligible debt, whichever is lower, will be made available at a variable interest rate, starting at 4 per cent, for a term of up to 5 years.

“Importantly these loans are designed to help farm businesses recover from the effects of drought and return to profitability in the long term.

“A total of $280 million is available over two years for Drought Concessional Loans that will give eligible farm businesses time to recover from the effects of drought – and get them back to profitability,” Minister Joyce said.

Minister Baston said the State Government would support the Commonwealth in the roll out of its scheme by undertaking the administration based on criteria negotiated with the Commonwealth.

“Meanwhile the current Farm Finance Concessional Loan allocation for WA is valued at $50 million and remains available for farm businesses to undertake productivity enhancement activities,” Minister Baston said.

“Five year loans for amounts of between $50,000 and $200,000 are available to WA farm businesses for productivity enhancement activities.”

It is more important than ever that farmers don’t self assess their eligibility.

For more information, visit Farm Finance and other Australian assistance measures.​