The Australian Government has announced its Ag2030 plan to support the farm sector’s ambition of a $100 billion industry by 2030.
Farmers should be fairly rewarded for their hard work and biodiversity stewardship, and rural communities should be well-connected, healthy and vibrant.
Government is prioritising seven key areas of action in support of Ag2030: Exports, Stewardship, Biosecurity, Innovation & Research, Human Capital, Supply Chains and Dams & Infrastructure.
The Australian Government has released its comprehensive whole of government Ag2030 plan in support of the farm industry’s target of $100 billion in farmgate value by 2030.
Minister Littleproud said the Budget underpins our focus on ensuring that farmers thrive, prosper and create jobs in a post pandemic world, and lays the foundations for industry to reach its 2030 goal.
“Government and industry will need to be clear eyed about the task ahead of us, and work harder and smarter and adapt the way we do things.
“The Government has identified seven priority key areas of action that will support the industry’s vision. They are: Trade & Exports, Innovation & Research, Human Capital, Fair, Strong and Resilient Supply Chains, Stewardship, Biosecurity and Water & Infrastructure.
“I am confident that if government focuses our efforts on these priority areas, we can create the environment needed for industry to reach this ambitious objective,” Minister Littleproud said today.
Trade and Exports
With 70 per cent of Australian farm produce exported, boosting our exports and expanding international markets is crucial to the ongoing growth in farmgate production and productivity.
This year’s budget delivers $328 million for Congestion Busting to boost farm exports, through a digital single touch point for exporters, and more sector specific streamlining measures for the live export, red meat, seafood and plant industries.
This budget also provides an additional $317 million for the successful International Freight Assistance Mechanism (IFAM), taking our total IFAM commitment to $669 million.
We’re also investing $28.6 million for a Simplified Trade System to simplify approvals and red tape at the border.
Innovation & Research
A new Agricultural Innovation Agenda including a Digital Foundations for Agriculture Strategy, a National Agricultural Innovation Policy Statement and $86 million for Eight Adoption and Innovation Hubs are at the heart of our innovation strategy for Australia’s farm sector.
We are investing $1.3 million to support Agriculture Innovation Australia to improve collaboration and commercialisation amongst and between RDCs as well as $7.2 million to streamline and modernise levy legislation.
Reliable and affordable telecommunications is crucial for our farmers and regional communities, so we are investing in the $83 million Regional Connectivity Program to improve telecommunications infrastructure and boost connectivity outside of the NBN fixed-line footprint. This is in addition to the $300 million co-investment fund to upgrade regional NBN customers to fibre as part of the $4.5 billion network investment plan.
Backing the people and communities that work in and support our farm sector is the highest priority for this government.
Through Higher Education reforms we have introduced, the cost of agriculture-related tertiary courses have been reduced by 62 per cent. We are also investing $250 million for access to up to 400 short courses for priority fields including agriculture to upskill our workforce.
Fair, Strong and Resilient Supply Chains
We believe farmers deserve to be fairly rewarded for their work, and are treated appropriately in the supply chain. Establishing an Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) Inquiry into the Perishable Goods Supply Chain.
We are also conducting an Evaluation into Country of Origin Labelling for food, which is also examining options to expand the scheme to include seafood and fresh cut-flowers.
Investing $1.3 billion in a Modern Manufacturing Initiative which will see the government invest in six strategically important sectors of the Australian Economy including the food and beverage sector.
An additional $50 million has been committed to Industry Growth Centres, including Food Innovation Australia Limited – to enable them to assist in implementing the Government’s new Modern Manufacturing Strategy (the Strategy).
We are also investing $107.2 million into the Supply Chain Resilience Initiative which will support projects that address identified supply chain vulnerabilities.
We are committed to rewarding farmers for their stewardship through the $34 million Agriculture Biodiversity Stewardship Pilot Program and the Australian Farm Biodiversity Certification Scheme.
Recent reforms will empower farmers to diversify their income and earn credits under the $2 billion Climate Solution Fund. The changes to the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) toolkit will now allow the agency to invest in soil carbon sequestration projects, unlocking farmers’ access to $1.6 billion in ARENA funding.
Protecting Australia’s world-class biosecurity system and our enviable status as a pest and disease-free nation continues to be a major priority for the government. Around $873 million is committed for biosecurity and export programs in 2020-21, an increase of $243 million since 2014-15.
Water & Infrastructure
This Budget delivers $3.5 billion for dams and water infrastructure through the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund.
Minister Littleproud said that budget measures in other Australian Government portfolios further demonstrates our whole of government approach to industry’s Ag2030 goal.