Sugar charities and NAIF infrastructure

There is a good post from Gene Tunny at Queensland Economy Watch on sugar marketing: PC scathing of Qld sugar industry’s “dependency psyche” & “back to the future” re-regulation

One of the low points for the current Queensland Government occurred in late 2015, when it failed to stop the Real Choice in Marketing legislation advanced by Katter’s Australian Party with support from the Opposition and Billy Gordon. This provided cane growers the extraordinary power to force foreign owned milling company Wilmar and other millers to market their sugar through Queensland Sugar Ltd.

The problem I have always had is that this regulation came after growers had profited nicely from selling their own stakes in the mills. Interesting also that QSL is treated as a charity.

Gene has drawn his post from the most recent Trade and Assistance Review by the Productivity Commission. This also contains assessment of the Northern Australia Infrastructure Fund.

There is good commentary in that section on the investment criteria and specific sectors such as irrigation dams and coal, but without doubt the standout quote is:

The lack of transparency to date and the promotion of certain projects by politicians (in the absence of credible supporting investment data) has raised concerns about the viability of future investments under the NAIF.


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