Budget boost for Queensland’s critical primary production

JOINT STATEMENT

The Miles Government is investing almost $715 million into Queensland’s vital agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries to further protect and strengthen this critical economic sector of production and employment.

The 2024-25 Queensland Budget includes $125 million for Future Fisheries reforms which support greater protection of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and a more environmentally sensitive and sustainable fishing industry.

The funding covers a structural adjustment package for fishers affected by the phase out of commercial gillnet fishing in the Great Barrier Reef, the parallel rezoning of the Great Sandy Marine Park, and increased protection from gillnet fishing in the Gulf of Carpentaria.

We’re also enhancing our management of biosecurity threats and upskilling our agricultural workforce with $20 million over four years from the $30 million Backing Bush Communities Fund.

In addition, there is $6.5 million over four years and $1.6 million ongoing annually to strengthen our capability across Queensland’s and Australia’s biosecurity systems including enforcement, investigation and prosecution functions.

Community safety is a major priority with $7.3 million over five years to further promote responsible dog ownership and implement stronger laws in response to dog attacks.

Another important budget feature is $3.3 million in 2024–25 for Round 7 of the Rural Economic Development Grants program, which enhances regional employment opportunities and stimulates agribusiness development in regional Queensland.

We also have $2.4 million in additional funding over three years for the collective action to manage Varroa destructor.

Other highlights:

  • $1.6 million to upgrade the Wild Dog Barrier Fence
  • $1.4 million to upgrade infrastructure and equipment at Gatton Smart Farm to support horticulture, productivity and profitability
  • Helping Queensland agribusiness to lower greenhouse gas emissions through the Queensland Low Emissions Agriculture Roadmap 2022–2032
  • Continued support of smart farms dedicated to advancing Australia’s agriculture and food industries through the AgTech Roadmap 2023-2028
  • Leading the Fresh and Secure Trade Alliance program to help protect and grow Australia’s horticultural exports
  • Helping Queensland producers prepare for future droughts
  • Eradicating fire ants through the National Fire Ant Eradication Program, in collaboration with the Fire Ant Suppression Taskforce
  • Maintaining swimmer safety through our Shark Control Program while advancing research into innovative shark mitigation technologies and boosting community education efforts.

As stated by Premier Steven Miles

“Agriculture is one of Queensland’s economic pillars, which is why we stand shoulder to shoulder with our producers.

“My first budget as Premier supports a range of critical services and programs including the uptake of technology and the transition to a low emissions future while maintaining our competitive edge.”

As stated by Deputy Premier and Treasurer Cameron Dick

“The first budget of the Miles Government is doing what matters for Queensland’s primary producers, with a strong investment in a range of economic development programs.

“We’re skilling Queenslanders to work in agriculture, we’re bolstering our frontline to protect against biosecurity threats, and we are supporting Queenslanders no matter where they live in our great state.”

As stated by Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities Mark Furner:

“The Miles Government stands with our primary producers in the face of the challenges that our climate and market conditions throw at us.

“That’s why our budget has such an unwavering focus on biosecurity, climate and market conditions, and supporting producers through industry changes.

“There is no greater demonstration of this than the $125 million we’re providing for fisheries reforms.

“Our ongoing support of the Backing Bush Communities Fund will help to further build rural and regional capacity and resilience to proactively manage biosecurity threats and upskill Queensland’s agricultural workforce.

“We’re helping our producers in their ongoing move towards a low emissions future through our Low Emissions Agriculture Roadmap.

“Producers can be assured we’re doing all we can in the fight against fire ants, with effective treatment of almost 300,000 ha achieving a greater than 99 per cent confidence that fire ant nests have been destroyed from those identified areas.”

/Public Release. View in full here.