THE single desk arrangement for Australian export rice should be extended beyond 2013, Opposition Primary Industries spokesman Steve Whan said in parliament today.
Primary Industries Minister Katrina Hodgkinson, on leave this week as the result of a car accident last weekend, is expected to soon announce whether the vesting arrangements that give Leeton company SunRice exclusive rights to export on behalf of Australian growers will be renewed.
Introducing a notice of motion in the Upper House calling on the government to renew vesting arrangements as a result of its statutory five-year review, Mr Whan said although the single desk was a fairly unique arrangement in agricultural commodities, it was one that had worked well.
Scrapping it would not benefit the industry and previous reviews found the vesting arrangement was justified, he said, although there was “a push by some interests” to end the monopoly.
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