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Key funding announced for Gisborne port roading

Anderton announces key funding for Gisborne port roading

Jim Anderton, the Minister of Forestry, yesterday announced that $2.475 million would be made available for the Hirini St port bypass road, regarded as vital to the Gisborne forestry industry.

Mr Anderton said, at an evening meeting with Gisborne's Mayor and members of the East Coast Forestry Industry Group, that the wood industry offered the greatest potential of any industry for substantial returns. But in the past, "It was also the industry in greatest need of transformation, from exports of low value commodities to high-value, high skill, job rich products."

The Forestry Industry Development Association (FIDA) and the government have been working closely since 2000. Mr Anderton said that, since becoming Minister of Forestry, his focus has been to remove impediments to development of the industry. The Hirini St extension is regarded by the Gisborne industry as being the key to all forestry access routes into the port.

"Land Transport New Zealand, from the Regional Roading Fund created by the Labour-Progressive government, has agreed to allocate the money. I have personally invested a huge amount of time and energy and the government remains committed to the industry. So I, along with my colleague, Hon Annette King, the Minister of Transport, am delighted to be able to make this announcement," Mr Anderton said.

ends

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