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5 October 2016: QRAA delivers $124 million to regional Queensland

5 October 2016

Over $124 million was approved to Queensland’s drought-stricken producers, innovative farmers and cyclone-affected businesses by QRAA in the last financial year.

This is just part of the many achievements outlined in the agency’s Annual Report for 2015-16, which was recently tabled by Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, Leanne Donaldson.

Chief Executive Officer Cameron MacMillan is proud of QRAA’s performance, crediting it to QRAA’s passionate staff and long history of delivering financial assistance and support to Queenslanders.

“QRAA was formed more than 20 years ago under the Rural and Regional Adjustment Act 1994 (Qld), and since then the organisation has maintained a dedication to supporting the people of regional Queensland,” Mr MacMillan said. “From customer service and our regionally-based Client Liaison Officers to our assessors and finance team, our people are experts in their fields and love helping to advance our state.”

In the 2015-16 Financial Year, the agency delivered funding from both the Queensland and Australian Governments into the hands of Queenslanders. Approvals included:

  • More than $31 million  in First Start Loans, to help aspiring primary producers purchase their first properties and buy into family  businesses;
  • Over $32 million in Sustainability loans, helping existing producers invest in expansion, systems, infrastructure and management practices for productivity and profitability;
  • Over $8 million in loans and grants for producers, business owners and non-profit organisations affected by natural disasters like Severe Tropical Cyclone Marcia;
  • $42 million under the Australian Government’s Drought and Drought Recovery Concessional Loans, helping producers stay on their feet during one of the worst periods of rain deficiency on record;
  • $194,943 in rebates for the purchase of personal protective equipment, for veterinary surgeons at risk of exposure to the Hendra virus.
  • Over $835,000 in grants for producers who suffered financial loss due to stock destruction and movement restrictions associated with bovine Johne’s disease.

Another highlight of the year was a reduction in the number of outstanding loans, provided for the recovery and relief of those affected by Severe Tropical Cyclone Larry in 2006.

“Larry tore through Queensland in early 2006. It caused more than $1 billion in damage and decimated Queensland’s iconic banana industry – QRAA was still providing assistance to help producers and small businesses recover more than two years later,” Mr MacMillan said.

“It’s now 10 years on from providing the first loans, and it’s been fantastic to see them come to maturity, signifying the end of a difficult chapter for those clients.”

QRAA is facing a big year ahead, with significant changes to the agency’s structure and services proposed in the 2016-17 state budget.

“We have welcomed the proposed changes, as they will enhance our role in supporting Queensland’s rural and regional sector,” Mr MacMillan said.

QRAA’s full Annual Report for the 2015-16 financial year can be found at www.qraa.qld.gov.au/about-qraa/publications/annual-report

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Last updated
10 May 2017