On 16 and 17 November 2016, Indonesian and Australian government officials and industry leaders of the red meat and cattle sector came together in Perth, Australia to participate in the fifth meeting of the Partnership.
In opening the meeting, both the Indonesian Co-Chair, Dr Himawan Hariyoga, and his Australian counterpart, Ms Louise van Meurs, emphasised the Partnership’s objectives in working to promote two-way investment between Indonesia and Australia. This mutual investment is essential to developing a competitive, efficient and sustainable red meat and cattle sector across the two countries, as well as supporting food security in Indonesia.
Both co-chairs acknowledged the Partnership’s role in strengthening the Indonesian-Australian red meat and cattle industry as part of a globally competitive supply chain.
This recognition of global opportunities extended to the meeting’s policy dialogue sessions, which covered the topics of agricultural financing and the impact of global supply chains on beef prices.
The first policy dialogue provided an overview of the different models of agricultural financing in Australia and how these models could be adapted to deliver inclusive financing for red meat and cattle production in Indonesia. This session included presentations from Mr Andrew Clarke (State Manager Agribusiness, National Australia Bank, Western Australia) and Mr Daniel Marshall (Manager, New Markets and New Supply Chains, Department of Agriculture and Food, Western Australia). The presenters explained the Australian model of providing minimal government assistance to farmers to ensure commercial sustainability. This presentation sparked dialogue on how the Government of Indonesia might approach financial incentives to support the country’s red meat and cattle production sectors.
The meeting’s second policy discussion addressed the impacts of global red meat supply chains on price sensitivity in Australia and Indonesia. To help Partnership members explore these impacts, Dr Brian Fisher (Managing Director, BAEconomics) and Dr Scott Waldron (Senior Research Fellow, University of Queensland) delivered a presentation on global trends that may affect the Indonesia-Australia cattle and beef trade. The policy dialogue considered the global drivers for the Indonesian beef industry and explored policies that could be implemented to capitalise on Indonesia’s comparative advantage in global and regional supply chains. Discussions also turned to current pricing levels in the Indonesian beef market and what measures might be taken to reduce these levels.
At the fifth meeting of the Partnership, members reviewed progress of the Indonesia-Australia Commercial Cattle Breeding Programme (IACCB), one of the flagship initiatives funded under the Partnership. The programme’s team leader, Mr Dick Slaney, provided an update on pilot projects already established and gave an outline of further pilots expected to be underway by mid 2017 (see article on page 18 for more details).
Partnership members were also updated on the development of a Monitoring and Evaluation Framework to guide the Partnership’s strategic oversight and the implementation of its individual projects. The framework is being designed to help ensure the Partnership is progressing towards its vision and intended outcomes. It will provide clear protocols for sound management and accountability, avenues for continued learning and improvement, and approaches to replicating and scaling up successful Partnership activities.
During 2016, a broad range of Indonesian and Australian red meat and cattle industry stakeholders worked towards a Joint Industry Vision for the two countries. These consultations once again demonstrated the positive outcomes that can be achieved through open and positive dialogue between Indonesia and Australia.
At the fifth meeting, Partnership members were presented with the overarching Joint Industry Vision statement:
‘A prosperous Indonesian and Australian red meat and cattle industry built on competitive advantage, strong relationships across the supply chain, and mutually beneficial investment, trade and innovation.’
Partnership members noted that the Indonesian and Australian industries would now focus on developing a more detailed Joint Industry Strategy (see article on page 22 for more details). The strategy will outline how the Australian and Indonesian governments, industry participants, business representatives, and the Partnership itself can contribute to achieving desired long-term outcomes.
Critically, the Joint Industry Strategy will help the Partnership identify priority areas of focus and funding from 2017–18 onwards. It is due to be tabled at the sixth Partnership meeting in August 2017.
For more information about the Partnership, and the communique from the fifth meeting, visitagriculture.gov.au/partnership