The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) and Forest Industries Association of Tasmania (FIAT) welcome Federal Labor’s commitment to fund a Regional Forest Industry Hub in Southern Tasmania with $1 million.

“Today’s specific commitment from Shadow Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Joel Fitzgibbon, and Lyons MP, Brian Mitchell, on a Southern Tasmania Hub is great news. This region not only has a rich tradition in forest industries, but can build to the future with new opportunities which will be created through official Hub status and funding,” FIAT Acting CEO, Terry Edwards said.

“This comes in addition to Labor’s Plenty Link Road funding commitment, a critical piece of infrastructure to boost forestry productivity, particularly native forestry productivity, and which was recommended in the Rolley report to the Tasmanian Government,” Mr Edwards concluded.

“Businesses like Neville Smith Forest Products support hundreds of jobs in the region and will benefit hugely from these commitments during this election campaign,” AFPA CEO, Ross Hampton said.

“AFPA has been calling for political parties to fund 13 Regional Forest Industry Hubs, at $1 million each over a four-year period, to allow each Hub to become properly established and plan for future forestry growth.

“Labor has said it will commit $13 million across the 13 Hubs, while the Coalition has committed $5 million in funding for five Hubs and has said four more will follow next year.

“It’s essential that all 13 Hubs are fully funded to ensure that these regions can work towards the bipartisan goal of planting one billion new production trees, in the right places, at the right scale, across Australia over the next decade,” Mr Hampton concluded.