Decreasing broadacre productivity growth in Australia is being blamed on the limited adoption of genetically modified technology, according to Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Sciences executive director Paul Morris, who made the comments while presenting his outlook for global economic growth.

“Broadacre productivity growth has declined during the past 15 years from 1.8 percent to 0.2 percent,” Morris told “We have identified a turning point in 1993-94 that was before the drought became a factor.”

He said Australia was ranked 13th in the world in GM crops sown, with just 0.7 million hectares. But now, state moratoriums have slowed the adoption of the technology among Australian farmers and possibly the development of new varieties, Morris claims.

Morris says that although the regulations were originally intended to protect society and the environment, the regulations are creating a drag on productivity.