HELPING HAND: Farmers struggling through the drought will have access to loans without having to pay anything back for two years.
HELPING HAND: Farmers struggling through the drought will have access to loans without having to pay anything back for two years.

Interest free loans available to drought stricken farmers

FARMERS struggling through the drought will have access to loans without having to pay any repayments for two years.

The federal government announced concessional drought loans offering two years with no interest or repayments are now available with the Regional Investment Corporation.

Minister for Drought and Rural Finance David Littleproud said the concessional loan product complemented the Government's suite of measures to assist farmers in drought.

"If you're a farmer, if you're in drought, you should see if you're eligible to refinance your debt into this loan," Minister Littleproud said.

He said the loans were not just about new debt but the opportunity to refinance existing bank debt and pay absolutely nothing for two years.

"These loans can save farmers more than $250,000 in interest and repayments in the first two years, compared to bank loans," he said.

"Farmers with existing RIC drought loans can also access to the two year interest free period.

Farmers will also be able to use the loans to pay for freight, fodder, water, netting and other essential costs of maintaining a farm.

"This complements other programs such as Farm House hold Allowance that puts more than $120,000 in payments in farmers pockets to put bread and butter on families table," he said.

"These loans are for viable farm businesses who just need better finance terms.

"They will help those that have shown they have the capacity to repay."

More information about the drought loan can be found at ric.gov.au or calling 1800 875 675.


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WARNING: Storms moving in, 85km/h wind gusts recorded

Storms to hit Ipswich, Somerset, South Burnett and Lockyer Valley.

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