Food export deregulation will cut red tape, end paper shuffling

Proposed deregulation reforms by the Morrison Government to make exporting Australian food products simpler and more streamlined have been welcomed by the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC).

The reforms, announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison overnight, would put an end to “paper shuffling”, with a move towards digitisation and a new online export documents system.

AFGC CEO Tanya Barden said the announcement illustrated the Morrison Government’s strong deregulation agenda and commitment to helping Australia’s food manufacturing sector remain viable into the future.

“Anything the government can do to cut red tape and streamline the export process for Australia’s food manufacturing industry will strengthen the sector and increase export output,” Ms Barden said.

“The proposed reforms would help expedite the export process for Australian food manufacturing businesses. This would be of significant benefit to the sector, which is highly-regulated.

“The food and grocery manufacturing sector has an annual turnover of more than $131 billion and is a driving force in the Australian economy – and export outputs are contributing more now than ever before.

“We are increasing our global footprint, with Free Trade Agreement developments opening up more export markets. Exports now comprise almost 25 per cent of total turnover, worth about $33.5 billion each year.

“This is a trend we want to see continue and deregulation of this kind will help us maintain an upward trajectory.

“The AFGC looks forward to working with the Federal Government in implementing the proposed reforms and informing how their application can help Australian food manufacturing businesses.”