Another step forward in delivering a Centre of Agricultural Excellence in Armidale is underway with the appointment of an interim CEO for the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA).
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Barnaby Joyce, said Dr Chris Parker would be appointed as interim CEO due to his valuable experience as a qualified veterinarian, a former farmer, and extensive experience in a range of private and government sector roles.
“This appointment will give the APVMA some certainty as it takes the next steps to build a world class regulator of agricultural and veterinary chemical products in regional Australia.
“This appointment also gives us time to complete a comprehensive merit-based recruitment process for a permanent APVMA CEO, to be based in Armidale.
“I want to take this opportunity to thank outgoing CEO Ms Kareena Arthy for the leadership, skills and commitment she brought to the APVMA’s operation since her appointment in 2013.
“During Ms Arthy’s time as CEO, she has led the APVMA’s implementation of the 2014 reforms to streamline regulation, better align regulatory effort with risk and improve registration and application processes. Ms Arthy also developed the APVMA’s Relocation Strategy, and has commenced the preparatory work for the relocation of the APVMA to Armidale,” Minister Joyce said.
“The APVMA’s relocation to Armidale will deliver new jobs, increase the availability of skilled employees, and increase the diversity and resilience of Armidale’s economy.
“Strengthening Armidale’s agricultural science focus is already realising positive outcomes, with two new regulatory science post-graduate degrees recently established by the University of New England to deliver a ready source of highly qualified future staff for the APVMA.
“The Government has embarked on a decentralisation program to grow jobs in regional Australia.
“So far the Murray Darling Basin Authority, the Grains Research and Development Corporation, the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation and the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation have all instituted moves to increase their regional presence.
“A whole of government process will be undertaken to identify which government functions and agencies are suitable for decentralisation.
“No amount of communication can beat the understanding that comes from living and working in the communities we ultimately serve.
“I look forward to progressing this work to ensure our regions can thrive into the future.”