IN THIS SECTION:
Kangaroo & deer exports, biosecurity & tariffs the focus of new bilateral talks
22 December 2017
The National Farmers Federation (NFF) this week signed a historic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Australia's farmers and the highly secretive state of the North Pole.
Unlike dealings with other trading partners, a frosty relationship has been seen as a positive.
NFF President Ms Simson described the event meeting as 'adventful' with the President meeting with the usually very private, North Pole Head of State, Nicholas Claus (Santa Claus) at NFF headquarters in Canberra.
"Mr Claus sought out the NFF after we were of considerable assistance during his operation's transition last year to an online ordering system, which was hampered by Australia's data drought.
"Mr Claus reiterated his thanks to the NFF for our help overcoming regional Australia's poor internet connectivity and as such he wanted to give something back.
"We proposed that a MoU would be an appropriate, mutually-beneficial way to do this."
Key proposed measures in the MoU include:
· An export protocol for Australian kangaroos and deer to the North Pole to assist with sleigh-pulling duties;
· Measures to streamline quarantine and customs processes so that Australian children do not miss out on Christmas presents due to red tape; and
· A commitment to work together to eliminate tariffs between the two countries.
Ms Simson said, like with all trade negotiations, there had been important details to work through.
"There was some apprehension from Mr Claus in regards to the proposed terminology," Ms Simson explained.
"However, once we clarified that the 'clauses' listed in the MoU were legal terms and not references to other potential Fathers Christmas he was comfortable to sign."
"It was obviously important to clarify given competitors such as the Easter Bunny, Christ-kind, the Yulemen and Le Befana."
Ms Simson said just like Australian farmers, the North Pole operated in a price sensitive global environment and Mr Klaus also valued the importance of continually improving productivity and remaining competitive.
"Mr Claus sees international bilateral relationships as an important step to achieving this.
"Food security is also vitally important for the North Pole given its short growing season and its large population of hungry little elves.
"Although the agreement isn't final nor binding, it is an important first step towards fostering closer Australian farmer-North Pole relations via a number of ambitious measures," Ms Simson said.
Media Enquiries: Laureta Wallace
National Agriculture Day 2019