A snap­shot of di­ver­sity in Aus­tralian forestry in­dus­try

Australian Forests and Timber - - VAFI -

THE VAR­IED na­ture of forestry in Aus­tralia is high­lighted in the 2014 Aus­tralia’s forests at a glance 2014 book­let, re­leased by the Aus­tralian Bureau of Agri­cul­tural and Re­source Eco­nom­ics and Sciences (ABARES).

Sen­a­tor Richard Col­beck, Par­lia­men­tary Sec­re­tary to the Min­is­ter for Agri­cul­ture, wel­comed the book­let and said it gave a de­tailed snap­shot of Aus­tralia’s forestry and for­est prod­ucts man­u­fac­tur­ing sec­tors. “Aus­tralia’s 124.7 mil­lion hectares of for­est cov­ers about 16% of the con­ti­nent. This in­cludes na­tive forests and in­dus­trial plan­ta­tions of var­i­ous soft­woods and hard­woods,” he said.

Sen­a­tor Col­beck was trav­el­ling to Kal­go­or­lie, Western Aus­tralia, to meet with the Forestry and For­est Prod­ucts Com­mit­tee to tour woodlands which con­tain highly valu­able san­dal­wood.

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“San­dal­wood ex­tends across the south­ern half of Western Aus­tralia, from be­yond the bor­der with South Aus­tralia and up to the Hamer­s­ley Ranges. The san­dal­wood in­dus­try is more than a cen­tury old with san­dal­wood ex­tracts used in the pro­duc­tion of in­cense, per­fumes and soaps,” he said.

“The tim­ber is also highly val­ued by In­di­ans for use in fu­neral pyres, which would have to be one of our more un­usual ex­port in­dus­tries.”

It is a great ex­am­ple of the di­ver­sity of Aus­tralia’s forestry in­dus­try which makes a Aus­tralian econ­omy and re­gional com­mu­ni­ties, with more than 61,000 peo­ple em­ployed in the in­dus­try in 2012-13.”

The Coali­tion is com­mit­ted to re­vi­tal­is­ing the forestry in­dus­try and cre­at­ing a sus­tain­able long- the in­dus­try, com­mu­nity and en­vi­ron­ment.

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