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Anderson puts politics before people.



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Stephen Smith MP, Federal Shadow Minister for Resources & Energy

 

Duncan Kerr MP, Federal Shadow Minister for the Environment

 

 

11 SEPTEMBER1998

 

ANDERSON PUTS POLITICS BEFORE PEOPLE

 

The Federal Coalition is using crude scare tactics for attempted polit ical gain with its attack on the Queensland Government over the South East Queensland Regional Forest Agreement.

 

Federal Primary Industry Minister John Anderson’s public stand shows that he sees timber communities as expendable pawns for his push to win back disenchanted National Party voters in Queensland.

 

The Beattie Government has acted to guarantee the continuing log timber supply by seeking to amend the Interim Forest Management Agreement while the RFA is finalised.

 

The Opposition supports the quick agreement by the Commonwealth during the caretaker period to ensure no disruption is caused to the local communities dependent on the log timber supply.

 

The Federal Opposition has learnt that the Queensland Minister for the Environment, Rod Welford wrote to Federal Ministers Anderson and Hill in August 1998.

 

In his letter, Mr Welford invited comments and early agreement to a set of objectives which will allow completion of the SEQ RFA to be expedited and deliver a world class forest reserve system and long term certainty for the industry.”

 

Mr Anderson responds to this with a baseless public attack, while also displaying a total lack of knowledge of resource issues.

 

Mr Anderson is fully aware that the rural communities are more concerned that a GST will threaten their future viability. No political stunts or smokescreens are likely to fool them.

 

That the State Government supports a shift to plantation based forest resources should be one of congratulations, because it will ensure the continued prosperity of those timber communities which would otherwise be eventually left with unsustainable resource flow from existing native forests.

 

Media contact:

Stephen Smith   08 9377 3355

George Haddad (Duncan Kerr’s office)  0419 009 214

 

 

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