top of page
  • Rikki Lambert

Ley urged to stick to Liberal Party policy on live exports

Sussan Ley (right) with Opposition Leader Peter Dutton

A regional Liberal MP has reminded the new deputy leader of the Liberal Party, Sussan Ley, that she needs to abide by party policy on the controversy over sheep and cattle live exports.

The western NSW MP co-sponsored at 2018 bill to phase out live exports with then western Victorian MP Sarah Henderson, and regional South Australian Liberal colleague Tony Pasin acknowledged whilst Ms Ley opposes live exports, she had to uphold party policy.

"Sussan has been an opponent for some time but lets not forget she is now deputy leader of the Liberal Party. The Liberal Party has a position to support live exports under the ECAS structures and systems.
"Sussan is bound as are all members of the executive by that policy position.

Hear the full interview with Tony Pasin MP on the Flow podcast player below:

Ms Ley could be on track to a confrontation with the Nationals over live exports policy.

She supports banning the trade, saying there was a win-win scenario whereby if capacity was increased there would be no need for the industry at all. 

Re-elected and reappointed Victorian Nationals leader in the senate Bridget McKenzie said the live export trade was unequivocal for her and her party, telling Sky News:

"We do not support a ban on live cattle or sheep exports.
"This is $1 billion industry. Tens of thousands of Australians work in it and it supports particularly Queensland, Northern Territory and Western Australia regional areas."

In the final weeks of the federal election campaign, the then Labor opposition had an awkward moment on the issue. Anthony Albanese would not confirm when live sheep exports would end under Labor's policy, which involves working with Western Australia and the industry to phase it out.

Labor's deputy leader Richard Marles tried to clear up confusion over the policy, saying the opposition would work with the industry on its future.

Mr Albanese said in early May the opposition would not put a timeline on when Labor would phase out live exports.

"The amount of live exports has halved in recent times and we'll continue the summer ban.
"We will consult with state governments, in particular the Western Australian state government, but we'll also consult with the agricultural sector about about the issues around live sheep exports."

WA Premier Mark McGowan said at the time that his government had put safeguards in place to keep the trade operating.

"We put in place rules that required a suspension of exports over the northern summer because of the shocking outcomes that were occurring, particularly in the summer months, up in the Persian Gulf.
"And then there was additional vet checks and additional monitoring put in place on some of the ships. I think those measures are effective and I think they're appropriate."


bottom of page