The Queensland government has released a timber industry action plan, to preserve and develop Queensland timber industry.
Across the state, the wood manufacturing industry employs 8800 people and produces $3.8 billion worth of economic activity.
The plan will ensure hardwood supplies continue in the Wide-Bay Burnett region until at least 2026.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk highlighted the importance of the timber industry’s importance to regional Queensland.
“This announcement will help secure the employment of 500 Maryborough and Wide Bay locals working in the industry.”
“It’s also a win for hundreds more people and businesses who indirectly rely on the timber industry,” she said.
According to the Premier, the agreement balances the needs of the environment and the needs of industry.
“This process will refresh the South East Queensland Regional Forests Agreement for a new generation. This was a monumental achievement entered into in good faith by government, industry and conservation groups, but it needs to be updated to recognise new unexpected challenges facing the industry,” said Palaszczuk.
Member for Maryborough, Bruce Saunders, noted that the agreement was developed in a collaborative process across sectors.
“In this region the action plan assured industry that supply in Wide Bay Burnett will continue up to 2026, while we bring all industry stakeholders together to build a sustainable future that also ensures conservation outcomes.
“I am extremely grateful to the timber workers, employers and industry groups for the commitment they have shown in ensuring a future for this industry and I am proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with them,” said Saunders.
As timber becomes an increasingly in demand resource in Australia and around the world, agreement such as these will enable the industry to continue to flourish, said Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries, Mark Furner.
“Sustainably managed timber is increasingly being recognised globally as the ultimate renewable and a key plank of the worlds response to climate change, carbon capture and carbon sequestration.”