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Patriarch and Sons - Logging Practices

21 November 2018

Ms O'CONNOR question to MINISTER for RESOURCES, Ms COURTNEY

Just days after you took over the portfolio, it was revealed Patriarch and 
Sons, a company with clear links to environmental vandals, Shin Yang, were 
planning to begin logging native forest in Tasmania and establish a 
processing facility in the Tamar Valley. 

Mr Hodgman - More racism, isn't it? 

Ms O'CONNOR - What?

Mr O'Byrne - He called you a racist. 

Mr Hodgman - One of your colleagues said you were racist in your 
undertones. Dog whistling. 

Ms O'CONNOR - What?

Madam SPEAKER - Premier, I ask you to withdraw that. Thank you. 

Ms O'CONNOR - Yes, absolutely. 

Mr Hodgman - Certainly, I will, Madam Speaker, if she is offended by what 
her Greens colleagues said.

Members interjecting. 

Madam SPEAKER - Enough. Please continue.

Ms O'BYRNE - Point of order, Madam Speaker. If the Premier is withdrawing 
that, he needs to stand so Hansard records it.

Ms O'CONNOR - I ask the Premier to withdraw it.

Madam SPEAKER - I ask the Premier to stand and withdraw it, please.

Mr HODGMAN - I withdraw.

Ms O'CONNOR - Keep sucking up to the Chinese government. 

Members interjecting.

Ms O'CONNOR - Of course I took offence. The problem is that you people 
cannot tell the difference.

Minister, satellite imagery of Shin Yang's logging operations in Borneo 
reveal illegal logging on steep slopes and intensified logging in an area 
slated for national park. Patriarch and Sons' parent company, Shin Yang, 
is notorious for illegal rainforest logging and human rights violations. 
Is this the company your Government's open-for-business mantra supports 
operating in Tasmania's forests? Will Patriarch and Sons source their 
timber from the 356 000 hectares of high-conservation-value forest set 
aside for reserves or the rainforest reserves and conservation areas your 
Government is opening up to the loggers?

ANSWER

Madam Speaker, the Hodgman Liberal Government is unashamedly proud of our 
forestry industry, unlike some of those in this room. We have a strong 
industry. It is adding value to timber processing which, from I 
understand, is what the Greens called upon all along: downstream 
processing in Tasmania, adding value here, ensuring we have the best value 
products in Tasmania to create jobs for Tasmanians. The Hodgman 
Government is unashamed of creating jobs, supporting industry to create 
jobs and making sure we have the right investment environment.

We have supported the creation of 15 000 new jobs. That is in stark 
contrast -

Ms O'CONNOR - Point of order, Madam Speaker, on relevance. This has 
nothing to do with the question. The question to the minister is: will 
this company of rampant loggers from Borneo be sourcing their timber out 
of high-conservation-value forests?

Madam SPEAKER - That is not a point of order. The minister has heard your 
question.

Ms COURTNEY - Thank you, Madam Speaker. 

Confidence is up, investment is up, prices are up, production has more 
than doubled, jobs are flowing and exports are at a 10-year high. The 
industry is one of the best in the world. That is why companies like 
Patriarch are coming to Tasmania because of what we do. I am advised 
Patriarch is looking to process, at Bell Bay, wood that is exported either 
as woodchips or whole logs. In other words, rather than exporting the 
value-adding opportunity is being created here in Tasmania, creating 
Tasmanian jobs in northern Tasmania.

The Greens always criticise - the hypocrisy of them with regard to 
forestry.

Ms O'Connor - We do criticise illegal loggers. Yes, someone in here has 
to.

Ms COURTNEY - We stand up for jobs in Tasmania, Ms O'Connor. 

Madam SPEAKER - Through the Chair, please.

Ms COURTNEY - If they are concerned about practices in Asia they should be 
welcoming companies here where we have good standards in Tasmania. Ms 
O'Connor knows that the wood harvested in Tasmania has to comply with 
world-class standards. That will continue. To suggest otherwise is 
absolutely trying to mudrake a company that is trying invest here and 
create jobs in northern Tasmania. It is the same old Greens and they are 
going to be followed by the same old Labor.