FEDERAL BUDGET: How the South Burnett fared

BURNETT residents hoping for a major Federal Budget 2020 announcement today were left wanting with no big ticket items slated for our region.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s multi-billion dollar spending spree did not set aside any specific gifts for our region.

However, our tourism sector can expect to benefit from the $51m Regional Tourism Recovery, which will help region’s like ours to pivot from international visitors to taking advantage of the domestic tourist market.

This money has been allocated nationally and is designed to help operators rebrand and change their marketing materials to appeal to Aussie visitors.

The $30.3m national Regional Connectivity Program will help improve telecommunications connectivity in regional areas.

Other commitments that may benefit our residents and businesses include:

  • An extension of the $200m Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) for a fifth round;
  • $41m for a Research and Development Program to pay for research and development activities that will benefit regional industries;
  • An additional $28.1m to extend the Stronger Communities Program;
  • The $5.7m Building Strong, Resilient Regional Leaders initiative; and
  • The $5m for the Regional Australia Institute’s research program and promotion of regional living.

Agriculture Minister David Littleproud also announced more than $300 million in funding to help modernise Australia’s agriculture export systems.

“Agricultural exports are critical to Australia’s economic recovery. That’s why this Budget is delivering the $328 million Busting Congestion for Agricultural Exporters Package,” Mr Littleproud said.

“This suite of reforms will modernise Australia’s export systems by slashing red-tape and streamlining regulation and service delivery for our farmers.”

“We’re making it faster and cheaper for farmers to get their product to market, while retaining the levels of quality and assurance that have made our exports world-class.”

The package includes $222.2m over four years for digital services to take farmers to market, including a 24/7 touch point for exporters and $10.9m over three years to create a more competitive meat export industry. – WITH GEOFF EGAN

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