Concerns on ag audit recommendations

WAFarmers is concerned by a number of recommendations made by the Commission of Audit which, if implemented, could profoundly affect the productivity and sustainability of Western Australia’s agricultural sector.

After a preliminary review of the Audit, WAFarmers President Dale Park said he hoped the government would look to the impact implementing any of the recommendations would have on industries and communities before accepting them.

Of particular concern to WAFarmers are recommendations to discontinue concessional loans, abolish the Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS), reduce funding for research and development, and abolish Cooperative Research Centres.

“If the Federal government was to implement the recommendations relating to agriculture, it would result in a deflated and less confident sector, ultimately producing a reduced economic capability,” Mr Park said.

“Each of these programs exists for a reason – to ensure the agricultural sector can build its capacity and resilience to ensure productivity and sustainability into the future.

“These are not programs chewing up resources with no results.  For example, RFCS helps people every day to make decisions on the future of their business – which may mean leaving the industry if required, or adapting their business for future resilience.

“WAFarmers would be very disappointed to see any of these recommendations implemented by the government, with some of them certainly defying commitments made prior to last year’s election.”

Ends.

All media requests must be directed to WAFarmers Marketing and Communications Officer Leslee Hall on (08) 9486 2100 or [email protected].

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