Australian farm businesses and organisations can now apply for government funding to undertake projects and trade missions to boost the agricultural trading relationship between Australia and China.
Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said $384,000 is now available under the Australia-China Agriculture Cooperation Agreement (ACACA) over the next two years to enhance agricultural cooperation with China.
“We’ve got an enormously important trading relationship with China, particularly in the agriculture space where our two-way trade was worth $12 billion in 2014-15,” Mr Joyce said.
“We have a strong history of working together on agricultural trade issues and we’re always looking to do more. ACACA is all about building on that trade, exchanging skills and information and promoting solid cooperation between our two nations.”
Mr Joyce said the current program will provide two streams of funding.
Funds will be available for projects and trade missions in priority areas including science and technology cooperation, sustainable agricultural technology, food safety, animal husbandry and exploration of niche markets.
Who is eligible?
And the program will support activities including technical exchanges, staff secondments, working groups, training programs, research and development and information exchanges.
It is open to Australian individuals, farm businesses, industry groups, rural and regional associations, education, research and academic institutions as well as federal, state and local government organisations.
“I encourage any interested groups or organisations to apply,” Mr Joyce said.
The ACACA program had laid a strong foundation, which should be used strategically to develop new opportunities presented by the China–Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA).
ChAFTA eliminates tariffs on key commodities where there is growing demand.
This includes beef, sheep meat, hides and skins, dairy, horticulture, wine and seafood – making Australian exports more attractive to Chinese importers and consumers.
For more information on ACACA and the projects it funds visit: www.agriculture.gov.au/market-access-trade/acaca.