Nationals Senator for Victoria Bridget McKenzie said a Coalition Government would strengthen Australia’s anti-dumping regime.
The food and grocery industry is Australia’s largest manufacturing sector and a key economic driver for regional Victoria.
‘Dumping’ occurs when foreign product is sold in Australia at less than its cost of production, undercutting local growers or businesses.
Senator McKenzie said it was vital to protect regional jobs and communities which were sustained by manufacturing.
She said this would be achieved by ensuring timely and affordable access to international trade mechanisms for local manufacturers.
“The Nationals have championed Australian farmers and manufacturers,” Senator McKenzie said.
“Australian farmers have been undercut by cheap imported produce, while regional employers including SPC Ardmona have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of their own money fighting anti-dumping cases with no real support – either legal, financial or in kind – from the Labor government.
As part of strengthened anti-dumping measures, Australia would require other countries to provide information on products it exported to Australia, with penalties applicable for non-compliance.
Senator McKenzie said a Coalition Government would provide more resources for anti-dumping investigations, which have been slow, expensive and ineffective under the Labor Government.
‘‘Increasing the opportunities for export, while subjecting cheap imports to more scrutiny, is crucial to ensuring agribusiness profitability, keeping local jobs and addressing food security.
‘’Ensuring a competitive international trading environment will strengthen our national economy.’’
Media Contact: Kathleen Tonini Mob: 0400530027