National Farmers' Federation

NFF calls on Government to settle live export compensation case

The National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) has called on the Government to compensate families and businesses affected by the 2011 suspension of the live cattle trade to Indonesia as a matter of priority.
Speaking on the five-year anniversary of the ban, NFF President Brent Finlay said hundreds of families, whose livelihoods were stripped from them through no fault of their own, continued to be overwhelmed by debt and struggling to rebuild their businesses as a consequence of the rash and unsophisticated decision made by the former Labor government.
“The naïve manner in which the month-long suspension was executed has inflicted wide-reaching and long-lasting damage,” Mr Finlay said.
“Not only did it have an immediate impact on the industry, including a sharp and unexpected halt to income, a compromise of Australia’s reputation as a reliable trade partner and perverse animal welfare outcomes for stock stranded in holding yards, but five years on there are still families wearing the financial and emotional scars of this misguided intervention.
“Poor government decisions cost jobs and lives and there remains an obligation on our politicians to right this wrong.”
Mr Finlay said the legal action seeking compensation from affected parties continued to drag through the courts to the ongoing detriment of families and business.
“Those affected by this sorry saga need closure. Each day that passes just reminds them of a time when government did not care about them, their families or livelihoods.
“Both major political parties have said, on the public record, the ban was a poor decision. Labor has labelled its actions ‘regrettable’, while the Coalition continues to attack Labor for imposing the ban.
“Despite this, neither side has taken any steps towards resolution of the legal case that followed.
“It’s time for those affected to be compensated for the social and economic consequences that followed 7 June, 2011.
“Five years is long enough – this needs to happen as a matter of priority.”

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