The Australian Agricultural Company Limited (AAco) announced a historic Heads of Agreement with the Bunuba Cattle Company Pty Ltd (BCC) - a cattle operations company which is owned by the Bunuba people.
The Bunuba people are the traditional owners of land in the Kimberley region of Western Australia over which Bunuba holds pastoral leases.
The Heads of Agreement is non-binding and implementation of the proposal is subject to the satisfaction of a number of conditions precedent, completion of due diligence, Board approvals, receipt of required Ministerial, regulatory and financier approvals and the formalisation of binding lease, cattle and asset sale documentation.
Under the proposed arrangement, AAco will have management control over the stations’ herd operations as well as marketing and procurement of cattle. Bunuba will receive an annual rent under the sub-leases that includes a component of profit from the AAco cattle operations. The parties have agreed to negotiate with each other on an exclusive basis with respect to the implementation of the proposal for a period of 3 months from the date of the Heads of Agreement.
AAco intends to work with the local community to enhance existing training and development programs focused on real jobs that are available locally and in our business, and utilise the traditional owners and indigenous ranger services for environmental, rangelands monitoring and management, according to David Farley, AAco Managing Director.
The traditional owners will continue to have access to their country through a land sharing agreement for sacred and other important initiatives such as Bunuba community living areas, and the newly established private upper secondary school - the Yiramalay Wesley studio school.