Australia’s forestry industry will be given a boost with two new initiatives injecting $50 million in assistance to secure jobs and future-proof the sector following the devastating bushfires this summer.
The impact of the bushfires on Australia’s forestry industry could be felt for decades with more than two million hectares of our productive forests fire impacted, which is why the Morrison Government was taking action now.
We have been working hard with industry to identify targeted initiatives to assist them to get back onto their feet, to secure jobs and future-proof for generations to come. The new initiatives include:
- Forestry Recovery Development Fund: $40 million for grants of between $1 million and $5 million to deliver innovative new investments in facilities and technology, for completion of projects within three years and will require matching by industry.
- Salvage Log Storage Fund: $10 million to establish storage facilities for fire-affected salvage logs in Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia.
The Forestry Recovery Development Fund will secure and create jobs, especially in our regional communities that have been hardest hit by the bushfires.
With this fund, the forestry industry will be able future-proof with innovative investments in new or existing facilities and technology, or assisting in transitioning to smarter, more efficient practices that value-add along the supply-chain.
The fund will underpin a sustainable post-bushfire recovery that ensures Australia’s forestry industry is productive, profitable and internationally competitive into the future.
In addition, the Salvage Log Storage Fund will establish storage facilities for processed wood products, fire-affected salvage logs, and other forestry products in Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia.
The clock is ticking when it comes to fire-affected trees, which must be harvested within 12 to 18 months and stored appropriately. This fund will ensure this valuable resource does not go to waste and can still be used to secure our domestic timber supply
This brings our total investment in the recovery of the forestry industry to $65 million, building on the $15 million Salvage Log Transport Assistance that we announced last month.
The Morrison Government is committed to continuing to work with the forestry industry to deliver further assistance that not only secures access to critical forestry resources, but secures a long-term recovery of this important sector.