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Stockpile repayment deadline extended

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Media Release John Anderson ESSSSJJSS,


DPIE98/29A 30th March, 1998

Federal Primary Industries Minister, John Anderson, today announced that the target date for repayment of the wool stockpile debt has been extended.

Mr Anderson said Cabinet had approved an extension of the deadline of up to six months.

" The timely removal of the debt remains desirable for growers, but the objective must be to minimise any impact on the wool market from stockpile sales in these critical times, " he sakL

Mr Anderson said that Wool International would still need to sell in excess of 90,000 bales per quarter on average, to eliminate the stockpile by the end of 2000, as required by legislation. Legislation will not be changed.

" Maintaining the legislative arrangements is critical to holding trade confidence."

The Minister said the decision to extend the deadline would allow Wool International to minimise its influence on the market, which has been hard hit by the fall in Asian demand.

"The Wool International legislation gives it commercial flexibility to both maximise returns to woolgrowers and to minimise the impact of stockpile sales upon the wool market, whilst imposing the discipline of the 2000 deadline."

The Minister said he would continue to monitor the market situation very closely.

Media Contact: Robert Haynes 0262777520/0419493511

Parliament House. Canberra ACT 2600 Tel: (06) 277 7520 Fax: (06) 273 4120