Victorian Water Minister Lisa Neville has released the review, ‘Effectiveness of Victoria’s Water Markets’, saying they provided an equitable and efficient way to access and share finite resources.
“This review gives me confidence the water market is currently working as it should,” Ms Neville said.
“The assessment found the largest water market in northern Victoria was working effectively, however, it needs to continue to develop to match changing demand.
“There has been a significant change in the southern Murray-Darling Basin due to climate change, water recovered under the Basin Plan to protect the health of our rivers, and emerging water market participants like investors and brokers.
“The water market is now central to meeting the water needs of irrigated agriculture.”
The review was conducted by independent consultants Aither, DG Consulting and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), with input from irrigators and the community.
Ms Neville said the volume of water traded had increased, indicating a greater understanding of, and confidence in, the market.
The northern regulated surface water market was the most developed, with the highest level of demand.
Ms Neville said 2016-17, some 2726 gigalitres (GL) of water allocation was traded in the north.