Delivering commitment to forestry industry

16 September, 2014

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Senator Richard Colbeck, announced the establishment of the Forest Industry Advisory Council at the Australian Forest Products Association dinner in Hobart last night.

"The establishment of a Forest Industry Advisory Council was one of the Coalition's key election commitments to revitalise the forestry industry. I am pleased to deliver on that promise and announce the members of the council," Senator Colbeck said.

"The council will advise Government on building a positive future for the forestry industry in Australia. Members will also provide informative consultation and recommendations on proposed legislation and policies impacting on the industry," he said.

Senator Colbeck said council members have a broad range of forestry expertise and are well-placed to inform Government about key issues impacting the sector.

"The councillors come from a range of sectors within the forestry industry and community, including sawmilling, private forestry, plantations, wood product importers, and manufacturers," he said.

"I congratulate members on their appointment to the council and look forward to working with them to revitalise the forestry industry."

The council will meet in a few weeks to discuss issues including research and development, opportunities for commercial forestry under the Carbon Farming Initiative, investment for new forests and processing, update of the National Forest Policy Statement, and emerging uses for wood fibre and cellulose products.

SenatorColbeck will co-chair the council alongside experienced forester, Mr Rob de Fgely.

Senator Colbeck recognised the previous forestry advisory council and thanked members for their contribution to the industry.

The Australian forestry industry is vital in many regional communities around Australia and contributed about $7 billion to our national gross domestic product in 2012-13.

The council members are:

  • Mr Rob de Fgely, forester, forest management, NSW
  • Mr Ian Dickenson AO, private forestry and farm forestry, Tas
  • Mr Vince Hurley, sawmilling industry, Vic
  • Mr Andrew Hurford, private native forestry and sawmilling industry, NSW
  • Ms Linda Sewell, plantation management, Vic
  • Mr Nils Koren, timber importer, Vic
  • Mr Andrew Leighton, pulp and paper manufacturing, NSW
  • Mr Ron Adams, research and development, WA
  • Ms Karina Coombes, Indigenous forest communities, NT
  • Ms Michelle Freeman, forester and forestry communities, Vic

And the observers are:

  • Mr Ross Hampton, Australian Forest Products Association, ACT
  • Mr Gavin Butcher, Forestry and Forest Products Committee, WA
  • Mr Ric Sinclair, Forest and Wood Products Australia, Vic
  • Mr Michael Hartman, ForestWorks, Vic
160914 Delivering committment to forestry industry
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