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Barnaby’s backflip a perfect ten on foreign investment

Media Release
Christine Milne 3 Oct 2013

Australian Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne says the hypocrisy of new Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce on foreign investment has already been exposed, after his miraculous change of heart on the buy up of more than 5,500 square kilometres of cattle station in northern Australia by Indonesian agribusiness.

"I never thought of Barnaby Joyce as a gymnast, but this stunning backflip has sold out his constituents with a perfect ten," Senator Milne said.

"Regional communities want to keep agricultural land and water in Australian hands because they understand that foreign governments are now seeking to outsource food production and not engage in trade. This can only end in loss of jobs and export earnings for Australia.

Only a few weeks ago Barnaby Joyce said: "I cannot possibly see how it is in the national interest, what benefit is it to Australian farmers, to Australian taxpayers, if another entity buys our land to breed their cattle, exports them to their own facilities and pays tax in another country.

"The Nationals have now adopted the open slather approach of Labor and Liberal.

"Rest assured the Greens unlike the Nationals are steadfast on the issue of foreign investment in land and water. In the Senate we will continue to oppose sales of land and water to foreign governments and support the introduction of a specific national interest test and $5 million threshold to trigger it.

"The Nationals talk the talk in opposition but are happy to sell the farm on behalf of their Liberal coalition partners when in government."


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