Gis­borne sawmill and road­ing win fund­ing

New Zealand Logger - - Forest Talk -

THE GOVERN­MENT’S RE­CENTLY AN­NOUNCED BIG $320 MIL­LION spend-up for the East Coast will help a com­mu­nity to re-vi­talise its sawmill and also up­grade roads in the re­gion that will ben­e­fit log truck traf­fic.

The Provin­cial Growth Fund (PGF) will in­vest $500,000 in the Far East Saw Mill near Gis­borne to in­crease wood pro­cess­ing ca­pac­ity and get lo­cal peo­ple into jobs, says Re­gional Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Shane Jones.

The to­tal cost to recom­mis­sion the mill is just over $3.6 mil­lion, with the rest of the fund­ing com­ing from the East­land Com­mu­nity Trust and the Far East Saw Mill Lim­ited.

“Cur­rently only 4% of raw logs are milled in Tairāwhiti (Gis­borne), but there’s po­ten­tial for that to in­crease by up to 25%, which will add an es­ti­mated $120 mil­lion an­nu­ally to the re­gion,” says Mr Jones.

“Forestry is a sig­nif­i­cant eco­nomic driver in Tairāwhiti and we want to make sure the re­gion is able to take full ad­van­tage of the op­por­tu­ni­ties the sec­tor pro­vides. Fund­ing from the PGF will also help speed up the mill’s pro­duc­tion ca­pac­ity, which is cur­rently only op­er­at­ing at 10%, while also re­turn­ing 50 jobs to the lo­cal econ­omy.”

Mean­while, the re­gion will ben­e­fit from up to $137 mil­lion spend­ing on much-needed road­ing and trans­port up­grades over the com­ing years.

NZL

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