Joe Hockey says there is 'great demand' for live cattle exports

Federal treasurer Joe Hockey says Australia’s relationship with Indonesia, as a result of recent events, has nothing to do with cuts for live cattle exports to Indonesia.

In April, prime minister Tony Abbott recalled Australia’s Ambassador to Indonesia following the “cruel and unnecessary” executions of the Bali Nine duo.

“There is great demand for Australia’s live cattle exports,” Hockey said.

“I don’t think there is any relationship at all between recent events and cattle exports.

“The clear impression I’ve got is that relations between Indonesia and Australia are very strong.

“We are very keen to be in contact with Indonesia again soon.”

Earlier today it was revealed Indonesia cut Australia’s quota for live cattle exports from 250,000 to just 50,000 head of cattle for the current quarter ending September 30.

Hockey said live cattle exports to Indonesia have been “incredibly strong” since his government was elected but added, “there has been volatility in the past regarding cattle exports,” he said.

“It is not in relation to the Australia-Indonesia relationship, which is very strong and very good.

“I was devastated when the past Labor goverment banned live cattle trade to Indonesia.

“This goverment has worked very hard, I’ve worked very hard, to restore this trade relationship.”

Australia’s foreign minister Julie Bishop said it was a trade matter and the two government’s are continuing trade negotiations.

Federal agricultural minister Barnaby Joyce said the reduction of live cattle exports to Indonesia is “disappointing” and something he hopes to rectify soon.

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