Towns split by interstate borders are used to living as one community so industries and businesses on the border face unique challenges.
Therefore, The Victorian Government will deploy a team of locally based ‘Border Brokers’ to support industries and businesses impacted by restrictions on Victoria’s borders with New South Wales and South Australia.
The team will include eight brokers who will work in the Hume, Gippsland, Loddon Mallee, Grampians and Barwon South West regions, which have all been affected by restrictions on their respective borders.
Brokers will be jointly led by Regional Development Victoria and Agriculture Victoria – which already have strong mechanisms in place to support communities and industry. This team will ensure locals have a key contact on the ground to advocate on their behalf and will support businesses and industry groups to address issues and challenges.
Border Brokers will work across state and local governments and with chambers of commerce, key agricultural stakeholders, industry, regional tourism boards and community groups to identify and triage issues. The team will work on solutions to challenges such as access to workforce and help to ensure supply of necessary goods and services to local businesses.
The Brokers will also be able to connect locals with the comprehensive support that has been provided by the Victorian Government throughout the pandemic. In addition, Brokers will be included in the membership of the Border Representatives Reference Group which the Government established last month. The BRRG brings together key stakeholders to identify local impacts and challenges experienced by border communities in response to Victorian/NSW border restrictions.