Australian government gives A$190m to help drought-stricken farms

7 Aug 18

The Australian government has announced a A$190m aid package for farmers affected by a drought on the east coast.

As well as helping farmers battle failing crops the funding is also expected to support health initiatives and community groups, prime minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Sunday in New South Wales.

He told reporters: “These are very exceptional circumstance and it’s important that we react and respond with the support that farmers need.”

The announcement brings the government’s total support to drought relief to A$576m. The New South Wales state government has also pledged more than A$1bn in assistance for farmers.

The dry spell has left 99% of the state in drought, according to the Department of Primary Industries and there are no signs of it ending.

Fiona Simson, president of the National Farmers’ Federation, said in a statement: “It’s vital that we help farmers and families that are dealing with the stress and pressures drought brings.”

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