National Farmers' Federation

NFF congratulates new Government Ministers

The National Farmers’ Federation has congratulated Nationals Deputy Leader and Victorian Senator Bridget McKenzie on her appointment as the Minister for Agriculture in the 46th Parliament and the first female to hold the portfolio in the Commonwealth’s history.
“Senator McKenzie has been a long-time vocal and effective advocate for regional and rural Australia,” the NFF’s first female President, Fiona Simson said.
“Women remain underrepresented in leadership roles in our industry. The significance of having a female in agriculture’s top job can’t be overstated.”
Ms Simson said the NFF had worked closely and successfully with Senator McKenzie in her former roles as Minister for Regional Telecommunications and Rural Health.
“Senator McKenzie has an in-depth understanding of the challenges, and also the phenomenal opportunities, before our regions and the policies and investments agriculture needs to reach its potential.
“We welcome Senator McKenzie’s support for industry’s goal to be a $100 billion industry by 2030.”
Ms Simson thanked outgoing Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud for the committed, passionate and pragmatic way in which he advanced the interests of farmers.
Mr Littleproud will retain the Water Resources portfolio and has also assumed responsibility for Drought, Rural Finance, Natural Disaster and Emergency Management.
“Under Minister Littleproud’s leadership, bipartisan support for the Murray Darling Basin Plan prevailed, $1 per litre milk came to an end and significant improvements were made to the regulations governing the export of live sheep to the Middle east,” Ms Simson said.
“We also welcomed Minister Littleproud’s commitment to a Biodiversity Stewardship Pilot and Sustainability Certification program to fiscally reward farmers for the environmental works they do everyday on behalf of all Australians.
“We look forward to the momentum continuing on these important initiatives with Minister McKenzie and to working with Minister Littleproud on seeing the continued implementation of the Murray Darling Basin Plan.
Ms Simson also congratulated the appointment of Ministers to the other portfolios key to agriculture’s success.
“We very much welcome the re-appointment of Simon Birmingham as Trade Minister. There is much to be done in this important area, including the ratification of the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Agreement and the Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement and the progression of preferential trade agreements with the European Union and United Kingdom.”
Ms Simson congratulated Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack on retaining the Regional Development and Transport Ministry; Angus Taylor on his re-appointment as Energy Minister; Mark Coulton for taking on Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government and Sussan Ley for her appointment to the Environment portfolio.
Ms Simson said the newly-elected Liberal-National Coalition Government had demonstrated the importance they placed on agriculture when, days after being re-elected, Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his deputy and Nationals Leader, Michael McCormack visited north west Queensland, where hundreds of thousands of cattle perished in a devastating flood event during February.
“Prime Minister Morrison and Deputy Prime Minister McCormack continue to be there for our farmers during tough times.
“By endorsing our vision for agriculture to be a $100 billion industry by 2030, the Coalition Government has also shown its commitment to agriculture’s future success and prosperity,” Ms Simson said.

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