The Western Australian Farmers Federation (Inc.) (WAFarmers) is calling on the major parties to commit to five key policy priorities to ensure the future of agriculture, ahead of the 2013 Federal Election on September 7.
WAFarmers calls on parties contesting the 2013 Federal Election to commit to re-establishing the competitiveness and profitability of Australian agriculture by:
1. EXPANDING LIVE EXPORT: Refining the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) and facilitating new market access.
2. ENSURING FINANCIAL COMPETITIVENESS: Maximising export income and facilitating conditions for internationally comparable interest rates.
3. MAINTAINING FUEL AFFORDABILITY: Retaining the Fuel Tax Credit Scheme for off-road diesel used in agriculture.
4. FUNDING RESEARCH: Developing a plan to ensure world-leading Research, Development and Extension.
5. ESTABLISHING ROBUST FOREIGN INVESTMENT POLICY: Developing a policy which recognises the importance of international flows of capital.
WAFarmers President Dale Park said it was vitally important the needs of the State’s producers were met by whichever party won the Federal Election.
“An incoming Federal government needs to recognise the tough time farmers have experienced and currently face,” Mr Park said.
“Additionally, a long-term plan must be established to ensure the long-term viability of the agriculture industry across Australia.”
Mr Park said farmers should note the agricultural policy of each party and their response to WAFarmers’ priorities when they head to the polls.
“Policy responses should also acknowledge the role farmers play in not only feeding the nation, but in their significant contribution to the wealth of the nation,” he said.
In the lead-up to the Federal Election, WAFarmers will be highlighting one policy priority per week, beginning with EXPANDING LIVE EXPORT.