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Commonwealth’s $86 million investment in new timber plantations welcome news for NSW’s housing construction sector

NSW forest industries have welcomed the Federal Government’s commitment today to inject $86 million to grow Australia’s timber plantation estate.

Australian Forest Products Association NSW Chief Executive Officer Victor Violante said the timber and paper manufacturing sector in NSW has been calling for urgent action to grow the plantation estate to meet our future timber and fibre needs.

“Around a quarter of every timber house frame built in Australia is made in NSW, so it is vital that our timber regions have the resource they need to produce the timber to build our homes,” Mr Violante said.

“Our timber plantations not only support regional manufacturing jobs, they’re also an essential input into the construction sector and play an important role in NSW’s climate change mitigation.

“NSW’s timber industry faces many challenging years due to the impact of the Black Summer bushfires that burned so much of the timber estate. The pandemic has been a wake-up call that we can no longer rely on imports to fill the gap, so we have to support our manufacturing sector.”

The Federal Government’s program announced today will require State Government and private sector co-investment, with the potential to unlock hundreds of millions of dollars of investment nationally for new plantations in key timber processing regions.

Mr Violante said AFPA NSW looked forward to seeing the detail of the program and working with the Federal and NSW Governments to ensure the program succeeds.

“We are pleased the Federal Government has recognised that it has a central role in securing our sovereign capability in manufacturing essential products, and our forest industries stand ready to play our part,” Mr Violante concluded.



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