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The signatories to the Tasmanian forest agreement today released details of an interim agreement following intense negotiations over the past week.
In a further report to the Tasmanian and Australian Governments on the status of their negotiations, the signatories said that the interim agreement outlined a broad range of issues, including matters going to shared objectives, an agreed vision, residue utilisation, durability and reserves protection mechanisms.
While the interim agreement demonstrates that agreement has been reached on a broad range of issues, final agreement is yet to be achieved on the critical issues of reserves and wood supply.
The agreement has involved assistance from the Federal Environment Minister, Tony Burke, and the Tasmanian Deputy Premier, Bryan Green.
The signatories have advised the Australian and Tasmanian Governments of a detailed work program over the next 4-6 weeks before the consideration of the final legislation by the Tasmanian Parliament, including:
A final agreement to be negotiated at the conclusion of the identified work will include details of a guaranteed wood supply for industry and secure protection of native forests with important conservation values.
The assistance provided by the Ministers over the weekend and subsequently has provided a renewed impetus to the process and has led to the identification of a number of new pathways to achieve the final agreement.
The signatories wish to publicly express their sincere thanks to both Ministers for providing their time, insights and expertise to assist us in our deliberations.
There is still considerable detailed work and difficult negotiations to be undertaken if a final agreement is to be concluded. However, this interim agreement provides a substantive framework to guide that ongoing work.
The signatories are represented by: