Resilience isn't the only answer

Opinion: Resilience isn't the only answer

Opinion
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The Land has published a number of articles on $1 milk and its effect on the dairy industry's ability to withstand this drought.

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We've heard a lot about resilience across regional and rural areas as our producers have adapted to manage ongoing impacts of drought, and now destruction and disruption from bushfires.

Recovery will require significant action in a number of areas.

The Land has published a number of articles on $1 milk and its effect on the dairy industry's ability to withstand this drought.

Two vertically and horizontally integrated supermarkets with a 70 per cent market share wouldn't be tolerated by regulators in any other country.

Laissez-faire competition laws and a lack of enforcement have seriously impacted the profitability of the dairy, poultry and horticulture sectors.

Competition laws impact the cost of inputs like capital.

Our heavily-regulated, concentrated finance sector means we pay more in risk and regulatory margin than our OECD competitors for capital.

Fixed costs like electricity are causing pain for exposed sectors.

Many electricity bills have increased four-fold in the last few years.

When moving from the lowest quartile (in the OECD) in energy costs to the highest, it is hard to be resilient and competitive.

NSW produces some of the best quality food and fibre available on international markets.

Australian farmers are amongst the most self-reliant and resilient, with government support for Australian farms at just 1pc of total farm income, compared with almost 20pc for EU farmers.

Something that governments have done that has had a positive impact on resilience is increasing international market access.

High prices for export-exposed commodities like sheepmeat and beef, predicated on export diversity, have been a feature of this drought.

Resilience isn't just about better business planning - it relies on the right policy settings and fair market conditions.

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