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Uncertainties about future of sugar mills must be resolved.

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Gavan O'Connor - Uncertainties About Future Of Sugar Mills Must Be Resolved Wednesday, 07 November 2001

ALP News Statements

Uncertainties About Future Of Sugar Mills Must Be Resolved Gavan O'Connor - Shadow Minister for Agriculture

Media Statement - 6 November 2001

Following representations from Labor's candidate for Dawson, Cherry Feeney, Labor's Shadow Minister for Agriculture, Gavan O'Connor, has agreed to meet representatives of Herbert River sugar growers to discuss their concerns about the future of processing facilities in the region.

"Ms Feeney has made me aware of the difficult position faced by canegrowers in the region as a result of uncertainty in the processing sector," Mr. O'Connor said.

"The Howard Government has been aware of this situation for a long time but has been very slow to respond.

"This Canberra-centric Government has shown no understanding that unless this matter is resolved quickly it is not only cane growers who face an uncertain future but many other workers in the district.

"Mill workers, harvesting and field crews and those who operate support businesses will also be affected.

"The 'hand's off' approach that has characterised the Howard Government's handling of problems in rural industries will not work in this case.

"Government has a role in working with rural industries to help them secure and generate jobs for regional Australia.

"I look forward to meeting with Herbert River cane growers as soon as possible after the election.

Authorised by Geoff Walsh, 19 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600.