Australasia's home for timber news and information

Labor will oppose privatisation of Forestry Corporation

NSW Labor will oppose the Berejiklian Government’s next round of privatisations including the Forestry Corporation. NSW Shadow Treasurer, Walt Secord and NSW Shadow Minister for Natural Resources, Paul Scully were responding to reports that the Berejiklian Government was set to embark on another round of privatisations including the Forestry Corporation (formerly State Forests) and the remaining half of the Westconnex to pay for the next wave of projects­ in her state. Source: Timberbiz

The NSW Premier, Ms Berejik­lian, was reported as saying her two prioritie­s were building the Western Sydney Aerotropolis, where she said 200,000 jobs would be created, and “reforming our balance sheet”, which she confirmed meant selling assets.

Mr Scully said that he feared for job losses in rural and regional NSW, if the Forestry Corporation was sold.

“As we saw with the privatisation of electricity, these sell-offs result in job losses especially in rural and regional areas.”

Forestry Corporation of NSW is the largest manager of commercial native and plantation forests in NSW with more than two million hectares of State forests. Forestry Corporation produces around 14% of the timber produced in Australia annually. It has a number of offices in main centres including West Pennant Hills, Wauchope, Dubbo, Tumut, Bathurst, Coffs Harbour and Bateman’s Bay.

“Selling public assets is a short-sighted approach as it takes away a stable long-term revenue stream for NSW,” Mr Scully said.

“Over the eight years of the current government, Forestry Corporation has contributed $124 million in dividends to the NSW Budget which is a revenue stream that helps pay for essential services throughout the state.”