Snapshot of rural debt in Queensland
TOTAL rural debt in Queensland is $17.2 billion, a rise of 1.6 per cent since 2011, according to the 2017 Queensland Rural Debt Survey.
Launching the survey at Parliament House yesterday, Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Minister Mark Furner said the average debt per borrower was down 12 per cent to just under $1 million.
“Unsurprisingly, the beef industry at $9.4 billion, or 54 per cent, represented the largest proportion of total rural debt in Queensland, followed by cotton ($1.3 billion or 8 per cent), sugar ($1 billion or 6 per cent) and grains ($0.93 billion or 5 per cent),” Mr Furner said.
“The highly productive Western Downs and Central Highlands region represented $5.5 billion or almost 32 percent of total rural debt in Queensland.”
The 2017 Queensland Rural Debt Survey was undertaken by the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority in collaboration with the Queensland Government Statisticians Office, with the support of all major rural lenders in Queensland and insights from agricultural industry associations.
Rural debt is defined as the total indebtedness of all farmers/rural enterprises throughout Queensland, where the servicing of the rural debt relies primarily on rural-generated income.
QRIDA chief executive Cameron MacMillan said the apparent paying down of debt in 2017 by farmers capitalising on improved returns for some commodities in 2016-17 was also reflected in the strong growth in farm management deposits in Queensland, which doubled in value between 2011 and 2017 to $1.2 billion.
See the RDS overview, full report and technical review at www.qrida.qld.gov.au/ rural-debt-survey