After years of neglect under the Labor Government, the Coalition is putting the focus back on agriculture. The Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper will be the basis for the Government’s policy platform for the agricultural sector. This policy will emphasise the important part that agriculture plays in the Australian economy.
The final White Paper is due to be released in 2015 and as a part of the development process there is another opportunity for comment and submissions to the Green Paper. The Green Paper is an assessment of both critical problems and opportunities for improving our agricultural competitiveness. A number of policy options have been presented including ideas from stakeholders in the first round of consultation.
I encourage anyone with an interest in the agricultural sector to read the Green Paper and consider making a submission about the future direction of Australian agriculture. Growing farm profitability, boosting economic growth, trade, innovation and productivity are essential to the future of this crucial industry. Our agriculture sector is extraordinarily diverse and contributes so much to our economy. As a nation and as an industry it is important to consider the direction that modern Australian agriculture should take.
Submissions on the Green Paper close on 12 December 2014. More information can be found at www.agriculturalcompetitiveness.dpmc.gov.au.
The Federal Coalition Government is providing a significant boost to social and economic development in Australia’s regions through the National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF). The NSRF consists of a $1 billion investment over five years beginning in 2015-2016 through grants from $20,000 and up to a maximum of $10 million.
The first round of the National Stronger Region Fund is now open. I encourage Local Governments and incorporated not-for-profit organisations in the Parkes Electorate to consider this fund for projects in our region.
The NSRF is designed to encourage investment in crucial infrastructure projects that are initiated by local communities and will have a particular focus on assisting disadvantaged communities. Projects that promote economic activity, increase employment and improve the capacity of local communities will be favourably considered.
To be eligible for the Nationals Stronger Regions Fund the proponent must have matched cash commitment so partnerships between applicants and Local Government, State Government, not for profit organisations and private sector companies are encouraged.
More information on the National Stronger Region Fund is available at: www.investment.infrastructure.gov.au/funding/NSRF. Questions regarding the application process can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applications close 28 November 2014. Round Two of the National Stronger Regions Fund is expected to open in May 2015.