Joint Media Release with Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham
A new landmark trade agreement between Australia and Indonesia will provide Northern Territory cattlemen with greater opportunities to expand within the region.
Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, said the agreement was a major boost for Territory farmers.
“This agreement will open up new pathways and greater access to the Indonesian economy as well as the ability for NT cattle businesses to expand and strengthen their supply chains.
“I expect this agreement will not only help local businesses to grow into overseas markets, but will also create more local job opportunities,” Senator Scullion said.
“This is a win for the Northern Territory cattle industry. Live cattle will be duty free for 575,000 head increasing by 4 per cent per year to 700,000.
“There will also be an immediate halving of the tariff on frozen beef meat from 5 per cent to 2.5 per cent, with elimination over 5 years, opening up another market outside of live cattle for the pastoral industry. While live cattle trade from the NT to Indonesia was worth $361.4m in 2018 and will continue to grow, this agreement should see frozen beef trade grow from $6.9 million last year.
“While Labor remains intent on shutting down the live export trade and hurting all of our rural industries, the CLP remains committed to supporting our pastoralists and their future.
“There is also opportunity outside of the cattle industry, for NT service providers with more certainty and guaranteed levels of Australian ownership in areas such as vocational education, mining services, health and aged care, tourism, professional services, telecommunications, energy, transport and construction, giving NT companies greater access to expand and operate in Indonesia.
“Territory Labor MPs Luke Gosling and Warren Snowdon must immediately confirm whether they support this historic trade deal and also confirm that the Labor Party will support the ratification of the agreement in parliament.
“The Territory stands to benefit substantially from this agreement with more exports and more jobs, both of which are desperately needed after almost three years of economic mismanagement by Michael Gunner.
“Territorians need to know that Territory Labor will back them in by supporting this important trade agreement or will Labor kill this deal just like they tried to kill the cattle sector in 2011 and the mining sector which they are destroying right now. “
Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham said the agreement would help forge stronger economic ties with one of our major trading partners and provide businesses and investors with more access to Indonesia’s trillion-dollar economy.
“This will deliver greater certainty for thousands of Australian businesses, farmers and investors,” Minister Birmingham said.
“It will also open new doors for Australian services industries including education, telecommunications, tourism, transport and health.
“This landmark agreement forms part of the Morrison Government’s ambitious trade agenda that aims to support business to grow and create more jobs for Australians.”