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Minister encourages comments on apples review



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S e n a t o r t h e H o n . J o e L u d w i g

M i n i s t e r f o r A g r i c u l t u r e , F i s h e r i e s a n d F o r e s t r y

S e n a t o r f o r Q u e e n s l a n d

Media contact: Melissa Patch 0418 734 413 or 02 6277 6211

Minister encourages comments on apples review

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator Joe Ludwig, has today reminded stakeholders of the 60 day consultation period surrounding the release of the Draft report for the non-regulated analysis of existing policy for apples from New Zealand.

Released for public comment on 4 May 2011, the draft report follows the Government’s commitment to proceed with a review of import conditions for apples from New Zealand after a decision by the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“The Australian Government understands the concerns raised by apple producers following the release of Biosecurity Australia draft report,” Minister Ludwig said.

“Australia’s biosecurity system is in place to protect Australian primary producers, and the environment, from pests and diseases.

“In order to do that, the Government needs to have access to the best available science.

“Anyone with scientific evidence that supports the notion of different quarantine measures than those recommended in the review to should make that evidence available to Biosecurity Australia.”

The WTO found that Australia’s quarantine measures in this case, based on a 2006 risk assessment relating to three pests and diseases that could be associated with apples proposed for export to Australia from New Zealand were not scientifically justified.

Public submissions for comment close, as planned, on 4 July 2011.

The Draft report for the non-regulated analysis of existing policy for apples from New Zealand is available at www.daff.gov.au/ba.