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Howard Government committed to forestry standard to improve exports.



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SENATOR THE HON. IAN MACDONALD Minister for Forestry and Conservation

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AFFA02/9M 15 February 2002

 

Howard Government committed to  forestry standard to improve exports

An Australian Forestry Standard will improve forestry export earnings and help reduce the $2 billion trade deficit in wood and paper products, Federal Minister for Forestry and Conservation Senator Ian Macdonald said today.

Senator Macdonald told Parliament yesterday that the Government supported the development of the Australian Forestry Standard that will provide a basis for Australian forest owners and managers to demonstrate the sustainability of their management through voluntary, independent, third party certification of forest management.

“This Standard, developed with broad consultation, will tell buyers of our timber products that the producer is committed to pursuing ‘best practice’ forestry management,” Senator Macdonald said.

“The Australian Forestry Standard reflects the willingness of stakeholders in the industry to meet growing market demand for products that come from sustainably managed forests.

Senator Macdonald said that scientists, industry, trade unions and community groups, including representatives of the conservation movement, are involved in the development of the standard.

“I congratulate all participants, like the World Wide Fund for Nature and other representatives of the conservation movement, on their active contribution to the Australian Forestry Standard,” Senator Macdonald said.

“It is in the national interest to assist the forestry industry to improve practices, attract investment and encourage value adding to reduce the $2 billion forestry trade deficit.”

“The Howard Government’s third term agenda, including the Regional Forestry Agreements Bill, tax incentives for approved plantation investment and the Australian Forestry

Standard reflects our desire to ensure long term sustainability for forests and those communities and jobs which rely on the forest industry,” Senator Macdonald said

The standard is expected to be finalised by mid this year when it will be submitted to Standards Australia for process approval by the Management and Business Standards Sector Board..

Further inquiries:

Senator Macdonald's office: David Moore 0417 774 724 or (07) 4771 3066    

  Last updatedv 15 February 2002

URL: http://www.affa.gov.au/ministers/macdonald/releases/2002/02009m.html Commonwealth of Australia 2000