The native forests used for timber production now appear to have an estimated value of $44 million, and this value continues to erode. On the economic front, we are witnessing the last days of a unique mining operation that destroys natural capital. For a state-owned enterprise, the company`s financial information may be consistent with current accounting standards, but so often these standards are used to mask rather than explain. The Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement (FRG) is a bilateral agreement between the governments of Tasmania and Australia, first signed on November 8, 1997. It is a framework document that is supported by Tasmania`s forest management system (including legislation, guidelines, codes, plans and management practices). Tasmania`s first regional forest agreement, signed in 1997 between the state and the community, was to us another era in which forestry was environmentally and economically sustainable. My figures have not been challenged by the government, the timber industry or Forestry Tasmania. The only way that will happen is when people are willing to pay a lot more for their wood, and we save a lot less. Forestry Tasmania`s annual reports from 1997 to 2017 (if you can understand what the accounts do not say) and the 2008 report of the Tasmanian General Auditory show that the Regional Convention on Forests (RFA) has not fully fulfilled its “economically sustainable” promise.
Today, when STT prepares its accounts, they do not reflect true values. For example, the state-owned enterprise does not own the country it registers and the country is not valued at anything. The tragedy for Tasmans is that long-term industrial timber contracts have locked the state into unprofitable trade agreements. Unfortunately, the expanded FRG that was signed last year – practically a blank cheque turning forever – almost certainly guarantees that nothing will change. We will not have a competitive and sustainable local forest timber industry on the international stage. Similarly, I provided an in-depth opinion on the profitability of the timber industry as part of a Tasmanian parliamentary inquiry into the sale of the Triabunna chip plant by Tasmanian timber giant Gunns in 2011. I was the only person to give an overview of all the circumstances that led to the sale of the wood chip plant, but I was not called to testify, although some of the final reports were reported to what I had noticed. The investigation was a witch hunt as to why the mill was unexpectedly sold to environmental philanthropists Graeme Wood and Jan Cameron, who immediately shut it down. Vested Timber`s interests in Tasmania were outraged that a consortium of local millers had been blind. Not in the forestry sector. All grants provided by the Australian government to Tasmania under the Tasmanian Intergovernmental Agreement (TFA) of $277 million in 2011 and $250 million (TCFA) have been quarantined in the calculation of GST`s share in Tasmania.