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Funding boost for private forestry development.



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Funding boost for private forestry development

DAFF05/202M 18 October 2005

The Australian Government will spend $3.4 million over the next two years to promote the growth of sustainable private forestry across the country.

Speaking at the Australian Forest Growers Policy Forum in Melbourne, Forestry and Conservation Minister Senator Ian Macdonald said the funding would promote the growth of the plantation-based forest industries by supporting 21 Private Forestry Development Committees across Australia.

Private Forestry Development Committees work with local landholders, industry and government to assist forest industry development at a regional level. All of them play a role in communication and in addressing issues that hinder forest development.

"Committees focus on challenges ranging from coordinating on-the-ground works to building bridges with government," Senator Macdonald said.

"We are in a very exciting and challenging era for private forestry and it is essential that a guiding hand is available to those that need help."

Senator Macdonald said a big challenge facing PFDCs and forest growers was some negative perceptions about plantations in local communities.

"Not everyone agrees that expanding plantations are in the interest of our nation," Senator Macdonald.

"However, if we are to reduce our deficit in forest and wood products, and increase the investment of forestry in regional areas, it is essential we continue to expand."

Senator Macdonald addressed the forum on issues including the review of tax treatment of plantation forestry, the development of a new research and development and marketing entity for forest industries, the National Action Statement on Farm Forestry and the role of forests in meeting Australia's greenhouse gas emissions targets.

Further inquiries:

Senator Macdonald’s office: David Crisafulli (07) 4771 3066 or 0400 144 483

http://www.mffc.gov.au/releases/2005/05202m.html

© Commonwealth of Australia 2002-2005 | Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry | Other DAFF Ministers | Prime Minister