Water assets must be included in stamp duty exemptions​

Following release of the 2016–17 State Budget, the Queensland Farmers’ Federation (QFF) welcomed the three measures announced by the government that will assist the agriculture sector address family farm succession challenges by:
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Removing stamp duty on the transfer of land for all types of succession; Increasing the limit of the First Start loans under the Primary Industry Productivity Enhancement Scheme (PIPES); andProviding grants for professional advice on a broad range of issues including succession planning.Removing transfer duty on all familial farm property transfers will likely have the greatest impact helping the sector with this issue.

However, the transfer duty concession currently omits water assets.

In an irrigation farming operation, water assets are an integral part of the business and their value often exceeds the value of the land.

The exclusion of water assets from the stamp duty exemptions is a major issue for our industry members.

Under the current transfer concession framework, these assets continue to attract the significant stamp duty charges.

It is important to consider that one of the reasons for the transfer concession was to bring Queensland in line with other states; however the omission of water assets is not consistent.

QFF acknowledges and thanks the state government for its considered policies positions towards farm family succession challenges.

Unfortunately, the full intention and benefit of the government’s intergeneration stamp duty exceptions will not be realised by our industry members while water assets remain excluded.

QFF will work with the government to address this oversight.

Until this is resolved, intergenerational stamp duty will remain a financial barrier for the next generation of irrigators who are ready to enter our growing sector.

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