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Prime Mover Magazine

Drought fund to help NSW farmers transport livestock

Drought affected farmers in New South Wales will come under consideration for a new fund established by the State Government.

The Drought Transport Fund complements existing subsidies in place for the cost of transporting water to and from drought-affected properties and moving stock for animal welfare purposes.

Low-interest loans of up to $20,000 to cover 100% of costs will be offered to eligible farmers. The first two years of the seven-year loan are interest and repayment free.

Niall Blair, Minister for Primary Industries, said more than a third of NSW is currently affected by drought. The hardest hit areas include the Hunter, Central Tablelands, Central West and Far West.

“Primary production is the lifeblood of the communities in these regions and when farmers are struggling, the whole community feels an impact,” he said.

“This additional step in our drought strategy will allow farmers to better manage core breeding stock, which will in turn enable a more rapid recovery when conditions improve.”

The Drought Transport Fund is an additional measure realised as part of the NSW government’s $300 million drought strategy. This also involves the Farm Innovation Fund, which has been devised to help prepare for drought and improve permanent infrastructure.

To date $54 million worth of low-interest loans have been approved in the financial year 2017-18. In March alone, $9 million worth of loans were applied for.

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