Labor’s Budget Forgets Australian Wine Industry

NSW Nationals

Shadow Minister for Trade and Tourism, Kevin Hogan said this week’s Albanese Labor budget has failed to provide any relief or assistance for Australian winemakers.

Mr Hogan said the industry is battling unsustainable low grape prices, an oversupply of wine, and increasing economic disadvantage in regional Australia.

“It is clear how dire the situation is when the refund on an empty wine bottle is worth more than what our growers receive for the grapes that fill it.

“Industry representatives sought modest and sensible funding ahead of this year’s budget.

“The government turned a blind eye to their requests and instead looked to introduce a new tax in the form of the deeply flawed biosecurity protection levy.”

Fortunately, the Senate crossbench has announced it will block that tax.

Mr Hogan said the Labor government has yet again forgotten our regional communities.

Industry body Australian Grape & Wine said the budget provides no relief for the serious challenges facing growers and winemakers in regional communities.

C.E.O Lee McLean said the industry’s pre-budget submission called for a $30

million sustainability package, $36 million for export assistance, and $20 million for domestic wine tourism.

“It’s disappointing that despite the sector’s $45.5 billion economic contribution, the government has turned a blind eye to our pleas for assistance,” he said.

“Many in regional wine communities across Australia are on their knees and need urgent government action to stop a bad situation from becoming a catastrophe.”

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