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Wrong views of rural industry



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M £ NT

OOP RE SS STATE

MINISTE PRIMARY

F OR ( 2

I N D U S

NOT FOR PUBLICATION BEFORE 8.30 P.M. 2nd OCTOBER, 1970

WRONG VIEWS OF RURAL INDUSTRY

• Two of the most widely held views about Australia's rural industries were both wrong, the Minister for Primary Industry,

Mr-. Anthony said at Corowa tonight.

These views were that the rural industries were in a hopeless

situation and that nothing was being done about it.

Mr. Anthony said the situation although very difficult, was

far from hopeless and a great deal was being done about it. And more would be done.

But the rural industries would have a sound future only if -ome fur'Ta.mental things were recognised, he said.

Mr. Anthony told a public meeting at Corowa these things _included° more attention to matching production to markets

greater emphasis on productivity as distinct from production

debt restructuring and farm reconstruction

. . provision of reliable information on market prospects

availability of rural nnance on appropriate terms.

Mr. Anthony said the wheat situation was rapidly improving with wheat prices going up, stockpiles being reduced and record

sales being made by the Wheat Board.

Beef prices were at very high levels and production last

year had reached record levels.

He said a decision by the Government on proposals for a

otatutory wool marketing authority could be expected in the near future. The urgent examination he was making of the rural debt

position was well advanced and he would put proposals on this very big and complex problem to the Government as soon as possible, Mr. Anthony said.

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"Farmers will be deluding themselves if they look for a simple cure-all for their problems", he said.

"I am concerned that talk of hopelessness and depression

will weaken their determination to look for sound, sensible solutions."

"Farmers' own determination will be no less than the

Government's, which is illustrated by the action now being taken on many fronts to attack rural industry problems."

2nd October, 1970