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Government preparing to gouge Sustainable Timbers Tasmania

  • Courtney admits Government grooming STT for more dividends
  • Business has built up cash reserves while selling plantations, cutting jobs and maintenance
  • Government not acting in best interests of forest industry

The Liberal Government has today confirmed it is preparing to strip tens of millions of dollars in special dividends from Sustainable Timbers Tasmania.

During Government Business Enterprise hearings today, Labor Shadow Minister for Resources Shane Broad asked why STT had built up $45 million in cash reserves.

New Minister, Sarah Courtney, confirmed the Government was grooming the business to pay special dividends, over and above the $15 million that has already been paid from the sale of plantations.

Dr Broad said under the Liberals STT had sold plantation assets, shed jobs, pulled back on the maintenance of forestry roads and jacked up the price of logs to sawmills by 10 per cent or more.

“It is clear that the Government has not been acting in the best interests of the forest industry,” Dr Broad said.

“Saw millers are telling us they are struggling to pay increased prices for logs.

“They will be appalled to learn that the Liberals’ are planning to wring millions in special dividends out of STT.”

 

Shane Broad MP
Shadow Resources Minister