The WA timber industry is worth more than $1.4 billion to the state each year and creates more than 6,000 jobs, mostly in regional WA, a new report shows.
The research, conducted by a team from the University of Canberra and Econsearch, has identified that WA’s timber industry generates $1.4 billion total gross value of output per year.
This comprises contributions of $220 million from the native forest sector, $617 million from softwood plantations, and $568 million from hardwood plantations.*
The report “Socio-economic impacts of the forest industry – Western Australia”, shows the industry creates about 6000 jobs in Western Australia, including 2114 direct jobs in primary processing and 1495 jobs in secondary processing.
Significantly, more than 90 per cent of jobs created by the industry are in regional WA.
The timber industry is growing WA’s economy. Compared with other primary industries, the timber industry generates a higher gross value than many others in WA, including vegetables, fisheries, wool or beef cattle.
The report underlines the importance of the forest industry to the WA economy and regional communities, according to the Forest Industries Federation of Western Australia (FIFWA).
“It is clear that the WA timber industry is a significant contributor to the state,” FIFWA Acting CEO, Matt Granger said.
“At $1.4 billion, the forest industry is worth around the same as the state’s beef and fisheries industries combined.”
“The industry delivers value-added products to domestic and international markets, employs many thousands of Western Australians, and is entirely sustainable,” Mr Granger said.
Mr Granger said that along with the vital contribution to regional communities, the timber industry also contributed to the state in a range of other ways, including:
• Helping address salinity and water quality issues
• Assisting with fire protection
• Contributing to research
• Supporting innovation and technology
The Socio-economic impacts of the forest industry – Western Australia can be downloaded from the Forest and Wood Products Australia website: http://www.fwpa.com.au/images/WA_Report_Dec2017_Final.pdf
This report comes on the back of two important policy documents supporting the growth of the industry.
GROWING A STRONG FUTURE: A policy for Western Australia’s native forest industry (available for download here)
WA PLANTATIONS: The missing piece of the puzzle (available for download here)
*sandalwood plantations and firewood collection were not examined in the report
Please direct all media enquiries to FIFWA Acting CEO Matt Granger on 0407 448 648 or email@example.com
Forest Industries Federation WA (FIFWA) has been representing the interests of the Western Australian timber industry since 1895. The industry is a key driver of economic activity and jobs in Western Australia, contributing $1.4 billion to the WA economy and creating about 6000 jobs in WA, with more than 90% of those in regional areas. The industry employs careful and comprehensive management policies to ensure WA’s forests are sustainably managed. Less than 1% of the total forest area is harvested annually.