26 October 2019

Strengthening our fisheries and forestry trade relationship with Japan


The Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries, Senator Jonathon Duniam, arrived in Japan today to promote Australia’s high-quality and sustainable fishery and forestry products.

“Australia and Japan have a long-standing and valued trade and investment relationship, and this trade mission will allow us to explore opportunities for further growth and partnerships that benefit both nations,” Senator Duniam said.

“Japan is our second largest trading partner for both forestry and fisheries products, with a combined export value of $706 million in 2018-19. In fact, both woodchips and tuna rank in Australia’s top 10 most valuable exports to Japan.

“The Free Trade Agreements the Australian Government has negotiated with Japan gives us all a strong platform to build on for further growth.

“Growing our primary production trade to Japan will be priority in a number of high-level discussions I will undertake with government and industry during this trade mission.

“I want to continue to enhance this vital relationship so we can further strengthen our economy and create more jobs for Australians, especially in our regional communities that are the backbone of our fisheries and forestry sectors.

“Ensuring we have strong relationships with trading partners like Japan are important as we aim to grow our Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry sectors to a $100 billion industry by 2030.”

Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Forest Products Association Ross Hampton said the delegation to Japan would continue to build a stronger relationship and help expand the market for high-quality Australian forest products.

“Our forest product exports to Japan make up about fourteen per cent – or about $510 million – of our total wood export products and the industry wants to see this grow to include a wider variety of products,” Mr Hampton said.

“It is fantastic that the Assistant Minister for Forestry Senator Jonathon Duniam is able to be part of the delegation, given he is such a strong supporter of our sustainable forest industries and recognises its importance to many hundreds of communities right across Australia.

“Our industry sees real benefit in building stronger ties with Japan because a strong export market for our forest products industries complements the domestic manufacturing sector to create more local jobs and greater investment in our regional and rural communities.”