Australia to introduce per container biosecurity levy on imported containers

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR) looks to be introducing a $340 million levy on all imported containers – 20′ and 40′- from 1 July 2019.

The Department of Agriculture currently uses a “cost recovery” model on imports to help meet detection and enforcement overheads but the money raised does not cover the entire bill. The new container levy, which would raise $340m over the forward estimates, would boost revenue for protection measures.

The charge is one of the key recommendations in an independent review of jurisdictions’ response to biosecurity chaired by Wendy Craik and received by the federal government in July last year when Barnaby Joyce held the ministry.

“Funding for the national biosecurity system should be increased by implementing a per-container levy on incoming shipping containers of $10 per twenty-foot equivalent unit and a levy of $5 on incoming air containers, effective from 1 July 2019,” the report found.

“The revenue raised by these mechanisms should be directed to those areas of the national bio­security system that are currently most underfunded, with a priority for strengthening environmental biosecurity activities, national monitoring and surveillance activities, R&I and national communications and awareness activities.”

Additional information will be given as it emerges.

Source: The Australian