The Hon. Barnaby Joyce MP
Shadow Minister for Veterans’ Affairs
Member for New England
30 October 2023
REGIONAL AUSTRALIA AND THE NEW ENGLAND CALLS OUT ALBANESE FOR PUNISHING OUR COMMUNITIES
Across the nation in regional areas, everyday Australians that are tired of watching our nation and our livelihoods being ripped apart are mobilising.
Last week, the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) was forced to take the extraordinary step of launching its largest protest campaign in almost 40 years, as Labor continues to decimate the industry and the regions.
Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, said the NFF was desperately trying to save farming from a Labor government that had torn up farming confidence. New NFF President, David Jochinke, also gave a dire warning at the NFF Conference that it was in the fight of its life.
“It has taken just 18 months for Agriculture Minister, Murray Watt, and the Prime Minister to lose the confidence of the agriculture sector,” Mr Joyce said.
“Our farmers are under siege. NFF’s public campaign, ‘Keep Farmers Farming’, is an embarrassment for Minister Watt and the Albanese Labor Government.
“Every single Australian is feeling the impact of the pain and hurt being put onto farmers, because the end result of Labor’s bad policies are families being forced to pay more for food at the checkout, while the producers of the food are receiving less at the paddock gate.
“Farmers are being punished by Labor in almost every possible area, from fresh food tax, scrapping the Ag visa, banning live sheep exports through to the ridiculous and unachievable renewable energy policies that will only hurt agricultural land while power prices go up, reliability goes through the floor, and the profits go overseas.
“Labor’s ludicrous ideology is putting our food and fibre production at risk, while our cost of living goes through the roof. In the electorate of New England, our City of Armidale has been directly targeted by Minister Watt, with the looming announcement of the future of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Authority location (APVMA), which could rip out 144 direct jobs from the Armidale community.
“It is heartbreaking and offensive for a Labor government to come along and blame a whole regional community for a workplace issue. Labor do not believe in the same future that we do for our regional city, to build the potential for our university, to build local jobs and most of all in government departments and agencies to be based outside of Canberra. For this reason, I have started a petition to take the voices of the electorate and the agricultural sector to Canberra, to save the APVMA. To sign the petition, visit: https://barnabyjoyce.com.au/save-the-apvma
We can see from the recent referendum just how out of touch the Canberra bubble and the Labor Government are from the rest of Australia. Now, more than ever, we need to decentralise government departments to regional areas, where practical measures, initiatives and policy can be developed within industries and communities that the policies are designed to serve.
Well Minister Watt, if you want to test your performance as a Minister of the Albanese Government within the sector you represent, I think you and Minister Bowen could do the best test of all and that’s a pub test, in the New England. Let’s see how that goes down.