02 March 2011 

Andrew calls on the Prime Minister to rule out further taxpayer support for the proposed Tamar River pulp mill.

Mr WILKIE (1:51 PM) —I rise today to express my disappointment at the Prime Minister’s evasive response last week to my question without notice about the proposed Tamar River pulp mill. My question was simple: would the Prime Minister rule out further federal financial assistance for the proposed Tamar River pulp mill, either directly or indirectly, including through the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation? While the PM’s response was convoluted, her meaning was clear. She would not rule out the government providing financial support despite this mill being so controversial and divisive, not just in Tasmania but throughout Australia.

The tortured story of this project includes a trail of broken promises and reads like a manual on how not to do business: a company used to getting its own way proposes a dirty pulp mill in an unpopular spot, using technology less than first promised, and a crash-through premier promises to abide by the decision of the independent umpire but then tears up the rule book and rams the project through state parliament, trashing proper process and public trust along the way.

Quite simply, a great many Tasmanians have concerns about this pulp mill, and in refusing to rule out further financial assistance the Prime Minister is ignoring the concerns of a great many Tasmanians. I call again on the Prime Minister to abandon this stinking mill.

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