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Vaile applauds car manufacturers on ethanol.



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The Hon Mark Vaile MP Leader of The Nationals Minister for Trade

Wednesday, 18 October 2005

VAILE APPLAUDS CAR MANUFACTURERS ON ETHANOL

The Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of The Nationals, Mark Vaile has welcomed the decision by Australian car manufacturers to promote fuel blended with 10 per cent ethanol as safe for vehicles.

“The decision by Ford, Holden, Toyota and Mitsubishi to label all new vehicles with a pro-E10 sticker next year is an extremely positive move for the biofuels industry and I welcome it,” Mr Vaile said.

“One of the barriers to the uptake of ethanol blended fuels, and highlighted by the Prime Minister’s Biofuels Taskforce, has been consumer concern that the use of E10 will not be covered by vehicle warranties.

“The decision by the car manufacturers will give consumers the confidence to purchase ethanol and in the process provide a boost to ethanol fuel sales.

“I have always said that consumers have the right to choose the fuel they want and this goes a long way to achieving that.

“This is the sort of leadership that the Government has been looking for - we need to keep moving forward on this issue for the sake of the industry, regional development and a cleaner environment, Mr Vaile said.

Mr Vaile said he hoped this decision would provide further encouragement for the major oil companies and ethanol producers to work productively together to help reach the Government’s 350ML target by 2010.

“The target can only be met if significant new contracts for ethanol are signed. I will continue to engage with all the key players in the industry - including Coles and Woolworth’s who hold around 40% of retail fuel sales to ensure that the target is met and preferably exceeded.

“The oil companies are working on their individual biofuels action plans for presentation to the Government and I am hopeful that the overarching action plan can be made public before the end of the year,” Mr Vaile said.

Mr Vaile also welcomed Minister Macfarlane’s comments that he will lobby international car makers to use the E10 label for imported vehicles.

Contact: Richard Forbes 02 62777420 / 0418 273 475