Man working in forest

Plantation Loan

Loans to support new plantation development and the replanting of bushfire-damaged plantations.

Purpose

To encourage farmers to develop new farm forestry plantations or the replanting of bushfire-damaged plantations as a result of the 2019-20 Black Summer Bushfires.

Use this loan to:

  • Fund purchases

    Purchase land for developing a plantation.

  • Prepare plantation sites

    Prepare a site for establishing a plantation including clearing and removal of vegetation.

  • Re-establish plantations

    Contribute to the cost of re-establishing a bushfire-damaged plantation including site preparation, purchasing and planting of seedlings.

  • Pay for other expenses

    Pay for infrastructure, working capital and insurance costs for plantation purposes.

Loan terms

$2.5m
Maximum amount
2.62%
Variable rate
20
Year term
13
Years interest only
No fee
Extra repayments
No fee
Application
$0
Early settlement
Redraw
Not available
Percentage of total debt

At least 50% of your total debt must stay with a commercial lender.

Frequency of repayments

We will determine the repayment amounts and frequency offered to successful applicants and this will be detailed in the loan agreement.

Repayment structure

Interest-only repayments for the years 1-13 and principal and interest repayments for years 14-20.

Principal repayments will be calculated based on a longer-term loan so only a proportion will be repaid during the term.

At the end of the loan term the business must repay or refinance any remaining loan through commercial finance.

Full terms and conditions are available in the loan guidelines.

Emissions Reduction Fund

You may also be eligible to register your plantation activities as a project under the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF). This is a separate scheme administered by the Clean Energy Regulator.

You do not need to register under the ERF in order to qualify for a Plantation Loan.

But if you wish to apply to register under the ERF, you may wish to do so before applying for a Plantation Loan in order to meet the ERF eligibility requirements.

Eligibility

You
  • must be an Australian entity and operate as a sole trader, partnership, trust or company
Your business
  • must be involved (or able to demonstrate preparedness to become involved) in the plantation forestry industry
  • have insurance in relation to the plantation or proposed plantation, for managing natural disaster risks (e.g. pests, bushfires, floods)
  • have an endorsed Plantation Management Plan, including that the plantation is in a location that is economically viable for wood production (with potential access to existing markets), and the commercial plantation tree species are site-suitable
  • have existing commercial debt and secure the support of the commercial lender for the proposed RIC Plantation Loan
  • be registered for tax purposes in Australia with an ABN and be registered for GST
  • have the capacity to repay the loan
  • be able to provide sufficient and satisfactory security for the loan
  • not be subject to external administration, bankruptcy, appointment of a receiver or (in the case of a partnership) an application for dissolution of the partnership
In addition
  • plantation proposals (both new and bushfire-damaged), must be greater than 30 hectares and can be multiple blocks
  • bushfire-damaged plantations must have been damaged as a direct result of the 2019-20 Black Summer Bushfires
  • the location or proposed location of the plantation is to be in Australia and is to be economically viable for wood production (with potential access to existing markets)
  • the trees planted are to be for commercial wood production
You cannot use this loan for
  • purchase / payment of operating expenses for the business’s other operations
  • purchase of private and domestic assets
  • payment of private and domestic expenses
  • purchase of and/or investment in non-plantation assets and expenses
  • payment of tax and statutory payments
  • your own labour costs
  • reimbursement for depreciation of assets
  • payment of dividends or other distributions of equity to owners
  • activities funded under other Commonwealth and state or territory government programs
  • any other non-eligible use listed in the loan guidelines

Before you apply

You need to check
Submit an Expression of Interest

Submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and our team will contact you to discuss your individual circumstances.

Submit EOI

Ask us a question

We are here to help

Apply

When you are ready to apply, complete the appropriate application form for either farmers or commercial growers.

You may need to contact your trusted financial advisor or the Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS) to help you complete your application.

  • Follow the Plantation Loan Document Checklist on page 1 of the application form.
  • We can’t start assessing your application until we get all the information we ask for, including attachments.
  • If you have any questions, call us on 1800 875 675.
  • Submit your application to us at applications@ric.gov.au or send to:

Regional Investment Corporation, PO Box 653, Orange, NSW, 2800.

Plantation Loan Farmers Application Form

Please note:

  • You can complete this form on a computer (fillable PDF) or you can print it and complete it by hand.

  • To use the fillable PDF application form you must download it to your desktop first. Right click on the link and select 'save target as' or 'save link as' and download the form to your desktop. Open the form on your desktop using Acrobat Reader. Make sure you save the application form regularly as you are filling it in.

  • The fillable PDF form will not function correctly when it is opened in a web browser or other software, for example Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Firefox, Preview. You are not able to save the form when opened in a browser.

  • You can download a free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC software.

  • Follow the Plantation Loan Document Checklist on page 1 of the application form.
  • We can’t start assessing your application until we get all the information we ask for, including attachments.
  • If you have any questions, call us on 1800 875 675.
  • Submit your application to us at applications@ric.gov.au or send to:

Regional Investment Corporation, PO Box 653, Orange, NSW, 2800.

Plantation Loan Commercial Growers Application Form

Please note:

  • You can complete this form on a computer (fillable PDF) or you can print it and complete it by hand.

  • To use the fillable PDF application form you must download it to your desktop first. Right click on the link and select 'save target as' or 'save link as' and download the form to your desktop. Open the form on your desktop using Acrobat Reader. Make sure you save the application form regularly as you are filling it in.

  • The fillable PDF form will not function correctly when it is opened in a web browser or other software, for example Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Firefox, Preview. You are not able to save the form when opened in a browser.

  • You can download a free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC software.

Resources

Guidelines

We will assess your application against the criteria in the loan.

Read the detail on who can apply for a loan and what happens after you apply.

Application form

Please note:

  • You can complete this form on a computer (fillable PDF) or you can print it and complete it by hand.

  • To use the fillable PDF application form you must download it to your desktop first. Right click on the link and select 'save target as' or 'save link as' and download the form to your desktop. Open the form on your desktop using Acrobat Reader. Make sure you save the application form regularly as you are filling it in.

  • The fillable PDF form will not function correctly when it is opened in a web browser or other software, for example Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Firefox, Preview. You are not able to save the form when opened in a browser.

You can download a free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC software.

Plantation Loan Farmers Application Form

Plantation Loan Commercial Growers Application Form

Plantation Management Plan

Applicants must provide a Plantation Management Plan (PMP) endorsed by a suitably qualified forestry professional.

Statutory declaration

You may need to make a statutory declaration to support your application.

Commonwealth statutory declaration

Commonwealth statutory declaration

Guidelines

We will assess your application against the criteria in the loan.

Read the detail on who can apply for a loan and what happens after you apply.

Application form

Please note:

  • You can complete this form on a computer (fillable PDF) or you can print it and complete it by hand.

  • To use the fillable PDF application form you must download it to your desktop first. Right click on the link and select 'save target as' or 'save link as' and download the form to your desktop. Open the form on your desktop using Acrobat Reader. Make sure you save the application form regularly as you are filling it in.

  • The fillable PDF form will not function correctly when it is opened in a web browser or other software, for example Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Firefox, Preview. You are not able to save the form when opened in a browser.

You can download a free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC software.

Plantation Loan Farmers Application Form

Plantation Loan Commercial Growers Application Form

Plantation Management Plan

Applicants must provide a Plantation Management Plan (PMP) endorsed by a suitably qualified forestry professional.

Statutory declaration

You may need to make a statutory declaration to support your application.

Commonwealth statutory declaration

Commonwealth statutory declaration

Common questions

The Plantation Loan encourages new plantation developments and the replanting of bushfire-damaged plantations as a result of the 2019-20 Black Summer Bushfires.

There are two kinds of Plantation Loans; farmers can apply to develop new plantation projects and commercial growers can develop new plantations.

Both farmers and commercial growers can use the loan to replant bushfire-damaged plantations.

The Plantation Loan is available for establishing a plantation (including purchasing land for a plantation) or re-establishing a plantation damaged by the 2019-20 Black Summer Bushfires.

Eligible activity examples are listed in the loan guidelines.

The insurance requirement is to support an applicant’s capacity to repay the loan in the event of a natural disaster.

It also supports the RIC’s security position in the event of a default.

The Plantation Loan can be used to cover associated insurance costs.

We recommend speaking to an insurance professional or broker for advice on natural disaster insurance products.

The Plantation Management Plan (PMP) will outline the proposed plantation management procedures, operational activities and compliance with relevant legislation.

The PMP will support the plantation's development over the 20-year term of the loan and will ensure the right trees are planted in the right places at the right scale.

The PMP needs to be endorsed by a suitably qualified forestry professional.

All applicants must include a bio on the suitably qualified forestry professional endorsing their plan.

The bio should outline qualifications, memberships and years of forestry experience.

A professional could be a local forester, forest engineer or technically trained specialist.

Principal repayments will be calculated based on a longer-term loan, meaning only a proportion of the principal will be repaid during the life of the loan.

At the end of the loan term, the business must repay or refinance any remaining loan through a commercial lender.

You may be eligible to register your plantation activities as a project under the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF).

This is a separate scheme administered by the Clean Energy Regulator.

Contact the Clean Energy Regulator on 1300 553 542 or visit the Clean Energy Regulator website.

No you do not need to register under the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) to be eligible for a Plantation Loan.

But if you do wish to apply to register under the ERF, you may wish to do so before applying for a Plantation Loan to meet the ERF eligibility requirements.

The suitability of the tree type for the plantation location is required to be outlined in the Plantation Management Plan.

Either hard or soft wood trees could be proposed if they are suitable to grow in the proposed location.


Help and support

If you have questions about your loan:

Call us on 1800 875 675

Email us through our online contact form

The Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS) can help with your application.