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Kelly welcomes close look at fertiliser prices.



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Media Release

Dr Mike Kelly AM MP Federal Member for Eden-Monaro Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Support

Office of the Hon. Dr Mike Kelly AM MP

Member for Eden-Monaro, Shop 16, City Link Plaza, Morisset Street, Queanbeyan NSW 2620

Tuesday 26 August 2008

Kelly welcomes close look at fertiliser prices

The Member for Eden-Monaro Dr Mike Kelly, AM MP has welcomed the release of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) report on fertiliser prices.

The aim of the ACCC investigation was to look into the reasons for dramatic increases in domestic fertiliser prices over the last couple of years.

Dr Kelly said: “I have had the issue of rising fertiliser prices raised with me a number of times as I have travelled around the electorate and it is a concern of many of my constituents.

“With world demand for fertiliser increasing due to rising agricultural production the Government wants to ensure that both local and international fertiliser producers are doing the right thing by local farmers.

“The Government will continue to do everything in its power to investigate anomalies in pricing and this investigation was important in giving confidence to farmers in Eden-Monaro”, said Dr Kelly.

The ACCC concluded that significant rises in fertiliser prices in Australia are mainly attributable to rapidly increasing global fertiliser prices. This has been occurring in a market where the global supply capacity is limited in the short-to-medium term.

The ACCC also noted concerns in relation to the operation of fertiliser markets in Australia during the period from late 2007 to early 2008. Much of the conduct in question arose because of a deficiency in short-term supply associated with unexpected domestic demand due to improved growing conditions, which occurred in the context of rapidly increasing world prices.

As part of this examination, the ACCC received voluntary submissions from fertiliser suppliers, industry associations and farmers.

The report is available on the ACCC website via the following link http://www.accc.gov.au/content/index.phtml/itemId/810233.

The Senate Select Committee on Agricultural and Related Industries is currently investigating similar issues in the fertiliser industry which is due to report on 16 October 2008. Information on the work of the Senate Committee is available at http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/Committee/agric_ctte/fertiliser/index.htm.

Media contacts: Evan Langdon 0447 694 201 or evan.langdon@aph.gov.au