The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) welcomes today’s announcements by the Federal, Tasmanian and South Australian Governments, of nearly $9 million in combined funding and industry support for the inaugural round of research projects, through the National Institute for Forest Products Innovation (NIFPI), Chief Executive Officer of AFPA, Mr Ross Hampton said today.

The Launceston NIFPI centre will benefit from a total of $5.5 million of contributions for projects, including from industry, while the Mount Gambier NIFPI centre will attract $3.3 million through the inaugural round.

The Launceston centre’s projects will include research around remotely acquired forestry data, enhancing the durability of Tasmanian hardwoods and developments in engineered structural timber products, while the Mount Gambier centre has new projects that will focus on worker safety, forest water use, forest management and advanced remote sensing.

“Today’s announcement of the inaugural round of project funding for Australia’s first two NIFPI centres is great news for forest industry research and innovation. It’s also a proud moment for AFPA, which helped spearhead the concept of NIFPI centres,” Mr Hampton said.

“We know of course that this is just the first round for both centres and that the Federal Government has also announced the establishment of at least two further NIFPI centres through the National Forest Industries Plan.

“With the Federal Government’s centrepiece commitment to plant one billion new production trees over the next decade, the projects that are funded today have the potential to transform how our renewable forest industries will operate in the future.

“I congratulate all of the funding recipients as well as the industry stakeholders, the Tasmanian and South Australian Governments, as well as the Federal Government for kicking off a new era in research and innovation for Australia’s forest industries,” Mr Hampton concluded.

More information the specific projects can be found here.