A future Coalition Government will abolish Labor’s new fresh food tax on farmers.
Federal Nationals’ leader David Littleproud said the new tax will force farmers to pay for the biosecurity risk of their international competitors.
“Labor’s Budget measure is a new tax on farmers and food, meaning farmers will have to pass it onto consumers, resulting in higher grocery prices at the check-out,” Mr Littleproud said.
“Why would any Australian government tax their own farmers, to pay for foreigners to bring their products into this country?
“To slug our farmers with a new $153 million tax, who will now be forced to pay for the risks of international importers, is unjust.
“The Nationals, as part of a Coalition Government, will stop Labor’s new tax, in order to protect and support our farmers, while also helping to ease financial pressures on families.”
In government, the Coalition was in the process of delivering a cost recovery model, where importers would pay a levy, commensurate to the risk provided, rather than Australian farmers.
“Labor has prioritised importers before Australian farmers. In stark contrast, The Nationals will always put Australian farmers first,” Mr Littleproud said.
“Instead of taxing Australian farmers, we will establish an ‘importer container levy,’ as recommended by the independent Craik Biosecurity review.
“Under our plan, importers of foreign products will pay for the biosecurity risk they pose – not Australian farmers.
“It makes sense that those importing into Australia pay for the biosecurity risk of their products that they benefit from selling here.
“This measure will save our producers of agriculture, forestry and fishery products, while ensuring our agriculture industry can thrive and be protected from biosecurity risks.”