The Regional Investment Corporation (RIC) has recently announced the deadline for applications for Interest-free terms to be the 30 September 2020. The RIC have on offer a number of loans designed to stimulate rural business off the back of the recent drought.
Currently, the loans offer two years interest free, followed by three years interest only and five years principal and interest payments. This will change for applications submitted after 30 September 2020 to five years interest only and five years principal and interest.
This offering represents an approximate interest savings of more than $150,000 compared to other commercial rates on offer. Therefore, it is important that should you believe your business would benefit from additional funding that an application is submitted to the RIC before 30 September 2020.
Both the Drought and AgBiz Drought Loan programs aim to support and strengthen primary production business and rural communities by providing financial assistance for the development and use of best practice, tools and technologies designed to improve the productivity of primary production value chains in a sustainable manner.
Eligible applications must meet the below criteria:
- Contribute at least 75% of your labour to the farm production business;
- Earn at least 50% of your income from the farm business; or
- Own or lease land and use it for farming purposes.
Projects eligible for funding may be delivered locally, regionally, or multi-regionally with a strong program focus being the promotion of practices enabling sustainable, productive and profitable agricultural businesses. Promoted practices can include those that target:
- Drought related activities;
- Refinancing of debt;
- Enhancing productivity; or
- Paying for operating expenses or capital.
The main assessment criteria of the project include:
- An effective drought management plan;
- Security for the loan;
- Effectiveness of the proposed project activities to achieve the proposed project outcomes;
- Project proposal suitability for public funding and value for money; and
- Applicant suitability.
Applications for this grant are currently open and will continue to remain open after the interest-free terms cease. For more information please visit the RIC website - https://www.ric.gov.au/farmers/drought#eligibility.
For assistance with considering your project suitability, submitting your application and supporting documentation please contact your usual Mazars Advisor or alternatively our grant specialist Owen Dingle on:
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