News 166 views last update:6 Aug 2012

AWB loses 67-year monopoly in wheat exports

Australian grain companies will now have the chance to export wheat under a new Australian government plan as Australian Wheat Board's 67-year-old monopoly will soon come to an end.

Agriculture Minister, Peter McGauran, now has the power and will handle applications for the next six months while discussions for the future of a single desk take place.
This plan may enable companies led by Cargill, GrainCorp and Glencore International to gain access to Australia's AUD$3.3 billion (US$2.6 billion) wheat export market. AWB's monopoly accounted for approximately 14% of world-wide wheat trading in 2005.
“Putting it into the hands of the minister is going to give the industry choice and the ability for other players to participate,'' said the president of Australian Grain Exporters Association, Robert Green.
However, ABW says that a lack of clarity in the Federal Governments changes to the wheat export system could compromise the national pool.
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