Labor split widening on disastrous forestry deal

Thursday 12 September 2013

In an interview with Leon Compton today, former Labor Deputy Premier and current Labor candidate, David Llewellyn, has exposed Labor’s deep divisions over the disastrous forestry deal.

After the deal was resoundingly rejected by the community on Saturday, Mr Llewellyn knows that the deal is a sell out to the Greens, bad for the economy and bad for jobs.

On radio today, Mr Llewellyn said that there are markets for our forestry products and that we were needlessly locking up more of Tasmania.

“I predict, and I think economists are predicting that one day, in the not too distant future, the next couple of years, the dollar will settle at its normal sort of level of around the high 70s, or 80 cents, and at that stage again our products will be marketable around the world and that’s what, you know, I have been stridently in opposition to the aspect of the Forestry Agreement that’s locked up around you know the great bulk of 500,000 hectares of land...

Mr Llewellyn also confirmed what the Liberals have been saying along, that FSC accreditation is not contingent on locking up another 500,000 ha of forests.

“I talked to a Japanese auditor for the Forest Stewardship Council prior to me going out of government in 2010, and he assured me that the great bulk of that would actually be certifiable under the Forest Stewardship Council program. Now I haven’t heard anything about that since that time...”

Locking up 500,000 hectares of productive forest was never about markets or certification. It was simply about keeping the Greens happy.

The only way to grow the forestry industry and create jobs, we need to end the Labor-Green experiment and elect a strong, majority Hodgman Liberal Government.

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