22 May 2015

Beefing up biosecurity funding

6:42 am on 22 May 2015

Extra funding for biosecurity, regional research and agricultural education in the 2015 Budget has been warmly welcomed by rural organisations.

New Zealand Biosecurity Services.

New Zealand Biosecurity Services. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

In addition to announcing more money for biosecurity, the Government's also introduced a biosecurity levy for international travellers.

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy said the Budget would boost biosecurity funding by $25 million over four years.

He said the money would increase detector dog capacity and fund more x-ray machines.

There will also be a new biosecurity levy for international travellers, with departing passengers paying about $6, and those arriving about $16.

Kiwifruit Vine Health said the levy would help fund a sustainable biosecurity system at the border.

Lincoln University praised a 20 percent lift in funding for agricultural tertiary studies in the Budget, and the 7.5 percent increase for science funding.

The Government also announced $25 million in funding for Regional Research Institutes that it said would help support regional economies.

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