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Supporting forest health

28 February 2005

Supporting forest health

The government supports the forest industry through funding research, responding to pest incursion while the industry have a key role in pest surveillance and detection.

Minister of Forestry, Jim Anderton spoke to the Forest Owners Association/Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry fourth Annual Forest Health Workshop, in Rotorua earlier today.

"I want to begin by stating I’m delighted to have the forestry portfolio. The sector has enormous potential for New Zealand, our export earnings, our employment levels and the incomes of New Zealanders.

"The key to unlocking increased value will be our success in growing our productivity and to compete in higher value markets. The government has a huge contribution to make to the success of the industry. Government involvement is crucial to many areas, including training, infrastructure, energy, science and trade promotion.

"Our handling of biosecurity is of rising importance to the sector. The Government has recently given high priority to improving the overall biosecurity system. It’s important not only for its immense economic impact but also in safeguarding the health and outdoor opportunities available to New Zealanders.

"In 2003 the Biosecurity Strategy noted our biosecurity system was well-developed overall," Jim Anderton said.

ENDS


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