Senate debates

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Questions without Notice

Queensland: Sugar Industry

2:33 pm

Photo of Pauline HansonPauline Hanson (Queensland, Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party) Share this | Hansard source

My question is to Senator Nash, the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources. Minister, foreign-owned company Wilmar Sugar holds a monopoly on the Burdekin region in North Queensland due to its ownership of the four mills, together with 100 per cent ownership of rail lines to and from those mills. Therefore, the growers have no option but to have their crops processed by the Wilmar group. Further, Wilmar has established its own marketing company, as well as its wholly owned transport company. At present, approximately 85 per cent of farmers are reluctant to sign Wilmar's cane supply agreement without the on-supply agreement between Wilmar and QSL. My question is: what action is the minister taking to overcome this deadlock, which must be resolved by 28 February 2017 so that farmers can lock in their forward pricing contracts as well as be in a position to nominate their marketing company of choice, which is in favour of QSL rather than Wilmar?


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