Federated Farmers wants New Zealand’s farmers to pat themselves on the back for making it possible for the country to afford the Budget announced by the Government today.
In his speech to present the Budget Minister of Finance Grant Robertson acknowledged the financial carnage predicted by the Government last year did not eventuate.
“And that’s because New Zealand’s internationally competitive, resilient and fleet-footed farmers and growers could roll with the COVID punches and keep this country financially afloat,” Federated Farmers national president Andrew Hoggard says.
The Minister’s talk of winding back the clock to undo the reforms of the 80s and 90s will send shivers down the spines of farmers, especially the ones old enough to remember farming in those days.
“The only reason farmers and growers were able to keep New Zealand out of the financial crap of last year was because we underwent the reforms of the 80s and 90s.
“Our sector is now internationally competitive, open and embracing of free trade. The 120 countries we trade with welcome our highly valued products, produced to environmental and animal welfare standards beyond what the world expects.
“We do this because it is the only way to operate a truly globally successful economy,” Andrew says.
Feds identified a few positives in today’s Budget, around additional support for streamlining farm planning, agricultural emissions research and boosting the effectiveness of NAIT.
“What we really need to see from this Government is an acknowledgement that the world pays us good money for the food we produce, and we need a regulatory framework that encourages and supports us to keep doing what we do.”