The Regional Investment Corporation (RIC) launched today, offering new low-interest farm loans directly to farm businesses.
The RIC is the new national administrator of the Australian Government’s farm loans scheme and replaces the loan scheme offered through state delivery agencies.
Chairman of the RIC Board, David Foster said the priority has always been ensuring the RIC is open for business from 1 July.
“Our goal is to make sure viable farmers in need can access our finance to help them through the tough times so they can thrive in the good times,” David Foster said.
“More Australian farm businesses will be eligible for low-interest loans than ever before. Farmers will also have more flexibility in how they use a RIC loan compared to the previous scheme.”
“Our loan products will be easy to access through a consistent assessment process, which means every farmer will be treated the same regardless of where they live,” David Foster said.
Mr Foster said the RIC worked with key farming stakeholders during the consultation phase to ensure their feedback on the loan guidelines and other settings was considered.
From today, eligible farmers will be able to apply for two loan products – drought loans and farm investment Loans. The RIC’s farm loans aim to make farm businesses stronger, more resilient and more profitable in the long-term.
Drought loans are for eligible farmers to prepare for, and prevail through, times of drought.
Farm investment loans will help eligible farmers build and maintain diversity in the markets they supply their product – both at home and overseas.
The RIC will also administer $2 billion in financing to state and territory governments through the National Water Infrastructure Loan Facility.
Farmers are encouraged to not self-assess. Please contact the RIC to discuss individual circumstances before deciding whether to apply.
Visit www.ric.gov.au for more information or call 1800 875 675 (8:30am – 5:30pm Monday to Friday local time) to speak to someone in our loans team.
Media inquiries: RIC@agriculture.gov.au or phone 0439 699 791.
- The Regional Investment Corporation’s priority is delivering low-interest loans directly to farmers.
- The RIC will be based in Orange, NSW.
- The RIC’s interim CEO is Matt Ryan. He is supported by a team of loan specialists and a seconded workforce from the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
- The CEO position was advertised 22 June and will be based in Orange.
- The RIC will take a staged approach to recruitment for permanent positions across lending services, corporate and business development. Recruitment for these positions will start soon and be finalised after the appointment of the CEO and to coincide with the opening of the Orange office.
- As the workforce comes on line in Orange, the interim departmental workforce will reduce and eventually cease once the office is fully operational.