This paper considers how the agriculture sector can leverage stimulatory regional investment to ensure enduring economic stability and social benefits by establishing a virtuous cycle of beneficial impacts.
A strong agricultural sector, availability of regional jobs and financial capital, and improved regional liveability are not only linked but interdependent. While all elements of this cycle are intertwined, optimal points in the cycle at which government (and industry) interventions can enable or accelerate beneficial flows have been identified for this paper under key themes and priorities. Interventions under the three themes (connectivity, infrastructure & workforce), specifically targeted at the five priority points (jobs, education & training; digital technology; physical access to markets; energy efficiency & liveability), will contribute to a virtuous cycle and underpin broad-reaching, beneficial socioeconomic outcomes.
These themes are not new, yet action which could create a stronger ag sector and stronger regions has been lacking. Short-term thinking is anathema to the concept of the virtuous cycle. Decision-makers must envision goals for agriculture and regional communities at least a decade ahead, preferably many decades, and consider the alternative scenarios resulting from action or inaction.