Dairy businesses and regions win in a big spending budget

AUSTRALIA’S dairy industry will benefit from tax cuts and a cash splash aimed at boosting jobs and growth in regional industries over the next four years, announced in this year’s Federal Budget.

Peak dairy industry group the Australian Dairy Industry Council (ADIC) praised the Federal Government’s plan to stimulate economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, arguing that the Government’s initiatives help facilitate key outcomes of the Australian Dairy Plan and deliver on key priorities identified in the ADIC Election Policy Platform.

“The dairy industry has just released an industry-wide strategy to improved profitability, productivity and unity over the next five years. Many of the measures announced in the Federal Budget help achieve these goals,” ADIC Chair Terry Richardson said.

The government’s flagship $74 billion JobMaker package includes many initiatives designed to increase consumer spending, increase the size of the workforce and create incentives for business investment. Key measures for the dairy industry include:

  • Businesses with turnover up to $5 billion can write off assets until June 2022.
  • Businesses can carry back tax losses from the 2019-20, 2020-21, or 2021-22 income years to offset previously taxed profits in 2018-19 or later income years.
  • Businesses employing a new staff member over and above their usual headcount will receive $200 per week if they hire an eligible employee aged 16 to 29 years or $100 per week if they hire an eligible employee aged 30 to 35 years.
  • $1.5 billion has been provided over five years from 2020-21 to support the Modern Manufacturing Strategy which is focused on building competitiveness, scale and resilience in the Australian manufacturing sector. Food and beverage manufacturing are one of the government’s six priority industries.
  • $328.4 million has been provided over four years from 2020-21 for a package of measures to improve the ease of doing business for agricultural exporters.

Investment in building and modernising regional infrastructure is also a key priority in the Budget:

  • $2 billion over ten years from 2020-21 for the development and delivery of a 10-year rolling program of priority water infrastructure investments that support agricultural output, increase water security and build resilience.
  • $269.9 million over four years (and $9.8 million per year ongoing) for a package to achieve a sustainable and certain future for Murray-Darling Basin communities, industries and the environment.
  • $155.6 million over four years for a package of measures to support farmers and communities in drought, including $50 million to extend the On-farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme.
  • $187.6 million over four years from 2020-21 to support investment in energy generation with a particular focus on gas.
  • $100 million over two years to facilitate Regional Recovery Partnerships with states, territories and local governments.
  • $30.3 million over two years to extend Round One of the Regional Connectivity Program to support the delivery of reliable, affordable and innovative digital services and technologies in regional Australia.

Mr Richardson said the Government’s investment in regional infrastructure, particularly in water and the Murray Darling Basin, is critical for regional development and industry growth.

“In the ADIC Election Policy Platform we asked for more water and energy infrastructure investment in the dairy regions to reduce the cost of doing business. We also called for the Government to implement recommendations from previous reviews of the Murray Darling Basin Plan,” Mr Richardson said.

“By Government investing in regional infrastructure and job creation initiatives they are saying that we have confidence in your industry to help Australia recover from this global pandemic.”

Media Contact:

Ashley Mackinnon, Public Affairs Manager

M: 0407 766 153

E: media@australiandairyfarmers.com.au

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