Media Release

Top discussions at the Top End as Ag Industry Advisory Council meets

22 August 2014

Priorities to revitalise Australia’s agriculture, fishing and forestry industries were on the table at the third meeting of the Agricultural Industry Advisory Council in Darwin.

Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, said the government remained committed to informed, consultative decision-making as he and the 11 council members met to explore ways to improve performance, profitability and innovation in Australia’s primary industries.

“Agriculture plays a primary role in securing our nation’s future and we must do our part to encourage investment, job creation and boost the competitiveness of the sector,” Minister Joyce said.

“By gathering together with industry leaders this government is demonstrating its commitment to listen and work to secure the prosperity of our agriculture, fishing and forestry sectors.”

The two-day meeting in Darwin was hosted by council member Luke Bowen. The meeting covered some of the agricultural issues facing the Northern Territory, as well discussions about the Agricultural Competitiveness Green Paper and the deregulation agenda in the agriculture portfolio.

“Reducing red tape, facilitating new international trade, supporting farmers in drought and educating and up-skilling our agricultural workforce are just some of the themes identified through submissions to the Agricultural Competitiveness Green Paper process,” Minister Joyce said.

As well as face-to-face discussions, council members took part in a tour of Darwin Port and a nearby live cattle export depot.

The Agricultural Industry Advisory Council was established as part of the Australian Government’s 2013 election commitments to enhance consultation with Australia’s agriculture sector. Council members will next gather again later in 2014.