Understanding the 2020 Drought Recovery Advice Fund

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Understanding the 2020 Drought Recovery Advice Fund
By Chris Vanderkolk

The government recently announced that it is making up to $500,000 available to kiwi farmers affected by drought, in a fund intended to be spent on accessing financial advice to manage the farm business throughout the coming year.

As is often the case with these things, a little sleuthing is required to find out the details, and put them in plain english - so we’ve done just that.

What is the 2020 Drought Recovery Advice Fund?

This fund has been created by MPI to help farmers to pay for financial advice focussed on their budgeting and recovery plans for the coming year. In simple terms, it's the government's way of getting farmers budgets up to date, and giving them access to advice from experts to cope with the effects of drought.

The fund is capped at $500,000 in total, and will pay for up to $5000 in fees for financial advice from a pre approved financial advisor, or an advisor as chosen by the farmer.

Who can access it?

It's pretty simple. If more than 50% of a farmer’s income is earned from the farm business, the business has been adversely affected by the 2020 drought, and your farm is in a drought affected region, then you are eligible.

Drought affected regions are defined as:

  • All of the North Island
  • The top of the South Island (Marlborough, Tasman, Kaikōura) down to North Canterbury (Selwyn District, Christchurch City (including Banks Peninsula), Waimakariri District, Hurunui District, and Kaikōura District)
  • The Chatham Islands

Who is a ‘pre approved trusted advisor’?

MPI has approved a list of advisors across the country which you can check here, or touch base with one of the three Figured Partners who are listed as pre-approved advisors by MPI.

Compass Agribusiness (Figured Partner)

Findex NZ Ltd (Figured Partner)

Gilmore Taylor (Figured Partner)

Baker Tilly Staples Rodway (Figured Partner) 

Farmers can nominate a supplier of their choice, provided they become registered as an approved advisor.

How to apply for the fund:

Applications must be submitted to fiunding@mpi.govt.nz before 5pm on 12 June 2020, using MPIs one page application form, which we have included here