Member for Barker Tony Pasin has welcomed the fast tracking of the Coalition Governments election commitment to establish a new $4 billion Regional Investment Corporation (RIC), as the legislation was introduced into Parliament this week to establish the new body.
Mr Pasin said the introduction of the Regional Investment Corporation Bill 2017 into Parliament was another significant step towards seeing the RIC open for business and delivering for regional communities from 2018.
“The Coalition Government has wasted no time in delivering on this key election commitment and introduced legislation to the House of Representatives today, for the future growth and prosperity of regional and rural communities,” Mr Pasin said.
“The Bill establishes the RIC as a corporate Commonwealth entity and ensures the RIC will have a governance structure that balances independent, commercial decision-making with appropriate responsiveness to government and the needs of industry.”
Mr Pasin said the RIC will streamline the delivery of up to $4 billion in concessional loans supporting growth, investment and resilience in rural and regional communities across Australia.
“The RIC will help strengthen farm businesses by providing them with access to low-cost finance so they can build and maintain diversity in the markets they supply, and take advantage of new and emerging opportunities across Australia and overseas,” Mr Pasin said.
“Previously, government assistance to allow access to low-cost finance for farm businesses has been riddled with hurdles due to the delivery agencies in each State and Territory applying the guidelines differently. This has been a huge problem in South Australia in particular,” Mr Pasin said.
Mr Pasin said it was largely owing to this South Australian experience and the disappointing performance of the South Australian Government Department of Primary Industries and Regions (PIRSA) that the Coalition had moved to reform the system.
“The RIC will also help fast-track the construction of priority dams and water infrastructure projects needed to stimulate investment, economic growth and increased agricultural productivity in rural and regional communities.”
For more information on the RIC visit agriculture.gov.au/ric.
Contact: Charlotte Edmunds – 8531 2466