Australia's consumer watchdog was in Griffith on Tuesday, discussing the findings of an 18-month long inquiry into Murray-Darling Basin water markets.
The final report was released on March 26 and included 29 recommendations on how to improve and simplify the water trading system.
One of these recommendations is the creation of an independent "Water Markets Agency" to handle market regulation across the basin.
A crowd of about 40 irrigators, basin authority representatives, water traders, council staff, and politicians attended the public forum at the Griffith Exies Club to discuss the inquiry with the ACCC.
Generally, people recognise the frustrations with the complexity of the water market and the poor information that is available- ACCC deputy chair Mick Keogh
Attendees were generally in support of the recommendations, however there were concerns the Federal Government would not implement them.
Speaking to The Area News, ACCC deputy chair Mick Keogh said the discussion was informative.
"Generally, people recognise the frustrations with the complexity of the water market and the poor information that is available," Mr Keogh said.
"Our recommended solution includes a dedicated agency and I think sometimes people are naturally reluctant to create a new agency."
"But without a dedicated agency active in the market overseeing trade, making recommendations and pushing for reforms, what we end up with is almost inertia. No one is responsible, so no one decides, so therefore nothing gets fixed."
Griffith mayor John Dal Broi was one of the community members at the forum.
He said the concerns raised by the ACCC were "nothing new" to irrigators, however it was good to see them formally identified.
"I think most of the irrigation community should be happy with the report ... however I am concerned about where it goes from here."
"When are these recommendations going to be implemented?," Cr Dal Boi questioned.
Speaking after the forum, Member for Murray Helen Dalton echoed this sentiment.
"It will be very interesting to see whether the recommendations are taken up by the government," Ms Dalton said.
"There's got to be one platform where all trade is done, like the stock exchange. I don't know why at the moment it is just a free for all."
Ms Dalton added that she "couldn't believe" the ACCC inquiry found no clear evidence of market manipulation.
"I don't think they looked very hard," she said.
The report is now in the hands of the Federal Government who will decide whether or not to implement the recommendations.
The full report is available on the ACCC website.
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