News

Rockhampton-based Senator joins rural debt fight

ROCKHAMPTON-based Senator Matthew Canavan has called on banks and industry to work together to reduce rural debt in a speech to the Senate on Tuesday night.

The speech came ahead of an announcement by Minister for Agriculture Barnaby Joyce yesterday about a round table discussion to be held in Canberra on September 23.

Mr Joyce said he'd like to see banks join the discussion about reducing levels of debt among struggling farmers.

In his speech, Mr Canavan said the current debt levels, particularly in North Queensland, were the result of record low beef prices, decreasing land values, natural disasters and the 2011 live export ban.

"In the last five years, we have had a 40% reduction in land values, a 20% reduction in prices and a shutdown of one of our major markets for our beef industry," the LNP senator said.

"It is no wonder that people are in a desperate situation."

Mr Canavan cited Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Sciences data which showed average debt in the northern beef industry over the last decade increased from $280,000 per farm to $650,000.

He said the biggest component of the increase was a result of just keeping their business running.

"People have too much debt," Mr Canavan said.

"We need those debt levels to come down to more moderate levels.

"We need the banks to be part of that process and the government has a role in helping to facilitate that. We have an obligation to help out people who are in need."

Topics:  matthew canavan, rural, senate




Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

LISTEN: Police investigating violent home invasion

Detective Senior Sergeant Scott Moon Officer in Charge of the Rockhampton CIB speaks to media.

Police are still looking for a third male offender

Man sold drugs to get through mining downturn

His trucking business went under so he took to selling pot

Gracemere auction promises to be a bargain hunter's dream

BIG RIG: Clinton Taylor prepares his items for auction earlier this month.

Auction to be biggest yet boasting everything from trucks to tools

Latest deals and offers


Win a $1,000

Grocery Gift Card
Learn More

What's on in the region this week?

Queensland Maroons State of Origin captain Cameron Smith pose for photographs during the State of Origin series launch at ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Tuesday, March 29, 2016. (AAP Image/Dean Lewins) NO ARCHIVING

Here's some local events to keep you entertained through the week.

Justin Miller outside court

OUTSIDE COURT: Justin Miller (left) leaves Rockhampton court house afetr giving evidence in the Peter Penaia trial.

Justin Miller outside court

John Bowen talks about Rockhampton Hospital car parking

ON THE STREETS: John Bowen took to Agnes St to ask residents their concerns about hospital parking.

John Bowen talks about Rockhampton Hospital car parking

Sea of Hands

Laurel Mason at the Sea of Hands on the lawns of City Hall. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin

Laurel Mason speaks about the Sea of Hands at City Hall.

Own Sunshine Coast property? You’re about to make money

UP AND UP: Property owners are likely to win from rent and price increases but tenants and first home buyers might not be so happy. Photo: Brett Wortman / Sunshine Coast Daily

Good new for property owners, not so good for buyers and tenants.

Sale nears on last large block of land in Coolum

The 43.37ha property on South Coolum Rd has sold.

South Coolum Rd property to be land banked