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Thursday, 5 December 2002
Page: 7358

Senator O'Brien asked the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, upon notice, on 13 November 2002:

(1) What is the purpose of the Australia-Indonesia Horticulture and Agribusiness Support Systems Task Force.

(2) When and where has the task force met.

(3) Who has represented Australia at these meetings.

Senator Ian Macdonald (Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation) —The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1) The Horticulture and the Agribusiness Support Systems Task Forces are two of the four task forces of the Australia - Indonesia Working Group on Agriculture and Food Cooperation. The Working Group was established in 1992 under the Australia Indonesia Ministerial Forum.

The purpose of the Horticulture Task Force is to facilitate cooperation and information exchange between the governments and private sectors of Australia and Indonesia designed to benefit trade and investment in horticulture, strengthen horticultural development, and assist in the development of markets for horticultural products. The purpose of the Agribusiness Support Systems Task Force is to promote cooperation in agribusiness trade and investment between Australia and Indonesia, with the exchange of information on the implications of current and emerging food safety and quality requirements in the global agri-food market being a key focus.

(2) Meetings of the Working Group's task forces are held at each meeting of the Working Group. The Working Group last met from 5 - 7 March 2002 in Perth.

(3) The Working Group and its task forces are co-chaired by Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Australia officials and Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture officials with participation by private sector interests from both Australia and Indonesia.