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Australian Government Coat of Arms

Budget | 2014-15

Budget 2014-15
Australian Government Coat of Arms, Budget 2014-15

Part 2: Expense Measures (continued)

Agriculture

A Competitive Agriculture Sector — boosting farm profits through rural research and development

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture 20.0 30.0 30.0 20.0

The Government will provide an additional $100.0 million over four years to fund research in partnership with Rural Research and Development Corporations (RDCs).

The funding will be used to provide grants for research projects that focus on delivering cutting edge technologies and applied research, with an emphasis on how the research outcomes would be used by farmers. The programme will require research to be done collaboratively between RDCs and one or more research providers with a financial contribution from one or more of the parties required.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Further information can be found in the Coalition's Policy for a Competitive Agriculture Sector.

A Competitive Agriculture Sector — improved access to agricultural and veterinary chemicals

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture 0.7 2.1 2.9 2.3

The Government will provide $8.0 million over four years to improve access by farmers for minor use agricultural and veterinary chemicals.

The funding will support the development of tools for improving access to the chemicals identified as high priority and enhancing existing legislative and administrative arrangements to facilitate access.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Further information can be found in the Coalition's Policy for a Competitive Agriculture Sector.

A Competitive Agriculture Sector — stronger biosecurity and quarantine arrangements

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture 5.6 4.7 4.7 4.8
Related capital ($m)
Department of Agriculture 0.1 .. .. ..

The Government will provide $20.0 million over four years to strengthen Australia's biosecurity and quarantine arrangements by providing additional resources to address pest and disease incursions. The additional funding will complement existing state and territory government emergency response arrangements.

Funding will be provided for additional, immediately available personnel and resources for early intervention when there is a significant incursion. It will also provide for national and international experts and for new and enhanced preparedness plans and activities, including developing vaccine stores, to ensure best practice management in the event of an incursion.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Further information can be found in the Coalition's Policy for a Competitive Agriculture Sector.

A Competitive Agriculture Sector — support for small exporters

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture 4.1 2.5 4.5 3.9

The Government will provide $15.0 million over four years to support small exporters in sectors where there are specific export certification registration charges.

Funding will be provided in 2014‑15 to provide eligible small exporters with a rebate of 50 per cent of their export certification registration costs, up to a maximum of $5,000. From 2015‑16, funding will be provided for projects that directly benefit small exporters, particularly projects to improve market access. The Government will consult the small exporter sectors on the projects to be considered.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Further information can be found in the Coalition's Policy for a Competitive Agriculture Sector.

A more competitive and sustainable fisheries sector

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture

The Government will provide $9.0 million over four years to support a more competitive and sustainable fisheries sector.

The measure comprises:

  • $2.4 million over four years to support OceanWatch as a recognised Natural Resource Management group with the responsibility for enhancing fish habitats and improving water quality in estuaries and coastal marine environments;
  • $5.0 million over four years to undertake a review and strategic analysis of invasive marine pests with a view to the removal or eradication of these pests, and to address the recommendations of the review once it is completed; and
  • $1.6 million over four years to support national recreational and commercial fishing peak bodies to develop and promote sustainable fishing practices, to assist the recreational and commercial fishing sectors to interpret and implement the national maritime safety standards, and to develop a survey methodology to conduct recreational fishing surveys on the social and economic impacts of recreational fishing.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resources of the National Landcare Programme.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Further information can be found in the Coalition's Policy for a More Competitive and Sustainable Fisheries Sector.

Agriculture Advancing Australia — International Agricultural Cooperation Programme — reduced funding

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑0.6 ‑0.6 ‑0.6

The Government will achieve savings of $1.8 million over three years from 2015‑16 from the Agriculture Advancing Australia — International Agricultural Cooperation Programme. Funding of around $0.3 million per annum will continue to be available.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Australian Animal Welfare Strategy — cessation

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑1.1 ‑1.1 ‑1.1

The Government will achieve savings of $3.3 million over three years by ceasing the Australian Animal Welfare Strategy Programme from 1 July 2015.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Exotic Disease Preparedness Programme — cessation

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture
Department of the Treasury ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4
Total — Expense ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4 ‑0.4

The Government will achieve savings of $1.8 million over four years by ceasing payments to the States for the Exotic Diseases Preparedness Programme on 1 July 2014.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Fisheries Resources Research Fund — reduced funding

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑1.3 ‑1.3 ‑1.3

The Government will achieve savings of $3.9 million over three years from 2015‑16 from the Fisheries Resources Research Fund Programme. Funding of more than $2.0 million per annum will continue to be available.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Leveraging Australia's Brand for Food — cessation

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑0.9 ‑0.1 ‑0.1

The Government will achieve savings of $1.1 million over three years from 2014‑15 by ceasing the Leveraging Australia's Brand for Food Programme.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Live Animal Exports — Business Assistance Supply Chain and Official Development Assistance (Improved Animal Welfare Programme) — cessation

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑2.3

The Government will achieve savings of $2.3 million in 2014‑15 by ceasing the Live Animal Exports — Business Assistance — improved supply chains and Official Development Assistance (Improved Animal Welfare Programme) one year early on 30 June 2014.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Payments of memberships to international commodity organisations — changed arrangements

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑1.7 ‑1.7 ‑1.8 ‑1.8

The Government will achieve savings of $7.0 million over four years by changing arrangements for the payments of memberships to international commodity organisations. From 2014‑15, membership fees for four international commodity organisations (relating to cotton, wine, sugar and grains) and six international fisheries organisations will be made from the Government's funding envelope for its matching contributions to the relevant Rural Research and Development Corporations (RDCs) instead of from direct appropriation funding.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation — reduced funding

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of Agriculture ‑2.0 ‑3.0 ‑3.0 ‑3.0

The Government will achieve savings of $11.0 million over four years from 2014‑15 by reducing annual appropriation funding to the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC). RIRDC will continue to receive approximately $8.5 million per annum in annual appropriation funding from the Government as well as funding from statutory levies collected from rural industries and Commonwealth matching contributions for expenditure on research and development.

The savings from this measure will be redirected by the Government to repair the Budget and fund policy priorities.

Support to Drought Affected Farmers

Expense ($m)
  2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
Department of the Treasury 5.0 17.0
Department of Agriculture 4.7 13.7 1.7 0.9 ‑1.4
Department of Social Services 0.1 6.6
Department of Human Services 2.8 2.1 0.9 1.0 0.1
Total — Expense 12.5 39.4 2.6 1.8 ‑1.4
Related revenue ($m)
Department of Agriculture 0.5 11.2 11.2 11.2 11.2
Australian Taxation Office
Total — Revenue 0.5 11.2 11.2 11.2 11.2

The Government will provide $320.0 million over four years as part of a package of measures to support farmers affected by drought.

The package includes:

  • more generous criteria for income support under the Interim Farm Household Allowance (Interim FHA) commencing from 1 March 2014;
  • an amended, more generous asset test for the Farm Household Allowance (FHA);
  • up to $280.0 million over two years for concessional loans to eligible farm businesses affected by drought;
  • up to $12.0 million in 2014‑15 to assist drought affected farm businesses with installing water‑related infrastructure. Funding will be provided to supplement the Queensland and New South Wales existing emergency water infrastructure programmes and for other jurisdictions if they establish similar programmes;
  • up to $10.0 million over two years in 2013‑14 and 2014‑15 to assist farm businesses manage the impacts of pest animals in drought affected areas, with Commonwealth funding contingent on equal contributions from states; and
  • up to $10.7 million over two years from 2013‑14 to enhance access to social and mental health services in communities affected by drought. Assistance will be delivered through the existing Family Support and Targeted Community Care (Mental Health) programmes within the Social Services portfolio, with $3.2 million to be met from within the existing resources of the Department of Social Services.

The Government will provide funding to State and Territory governments for the administration costs associated with implementing the drought concessional loans.

Further information can be found in the joint press release of 26 February 2014 issued by the Prime Minister and the Minister for Agriculture.