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Tony Burke visit to Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.



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The Hon. Tony Burke MP Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Home > Media releases > August 2008 > Tony Burke visit to Papua New Guinea and Indonesia

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18 August 2008 DAFF08/103B

Australia’s strong ties with its near neighbours will be reaffirmed during a visit by Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Tony Burke to Papua New Guinea and Indonesia this week. During the visit, Mr Burke will meet his counterpart ministers and key business representatives in both countries.

He will be accompanied by representatives of Australian primary industries including Meat and Livestock Australia, the Cattle Council of Australia, Australian Livestock Exporters Council, Australian Citrus Growers and the fishing industry.

Key issues for discussion are expected to include joint efforts to stop illegal fishing, to enhance forestry and fisheries conservation and expand agriculture market access.

“Australia has a strong agricultural trade relationship with both Papua New Guinea and Indonesia and we expect that trade to grow,” Mr Burke said.

“Australia provides assistance to Papua New Guinea in quarantine capacity-building, fisheries management, combating illegal logging and sustainable forest management.

“Papua New Guinea is a key partner in the region and I look forward to discussing how to strengthen our bilateral agricultural relationship and areas for further cooperation.”

Papua New Guinea - Australia is Papua New Guinea’s largest source of imports and exports. Agricultural exports alone to Papua New Guinea totalled $133 million in 2007.

Indonesia - Australia is the major supplier of wheat to Indonesia, exporting around 1.5 million

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tonnes in 2007 and is also Indonesia's major supplier of live cattle, exporting over 520,000 head in 2007.

Mr Burke said his meetings with counterparts in Indonesia would provide an opportunity to discuss joint efforts to curb illegal fishing activity to Australia’s north and reduce illegal logging in Indonesia.

“I will also emphasise Australia’s interest in access to the Indonesian market and our interest in collaboration on capacity-building initiatives across the quarantine, agriculture, fishing and forestry sectors,” he said.

Mr Burke will undertake a field visit to a major cattle feedlot handling Australian Brahman and Brahman-cross cattle, a facility processing Australian wheat, as well as forestry and fisheries research projects.

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