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Source: New Zealand Parliament – Hansard

TAMATI COFFEY (Labour—Waiariki): Thank you, Mr Speaker. The member from Hamilton West, David Bennett, should do well to actually look after the things that happen in Hamilton West, and forestry isn’t one of them. If you want conversations around forestry, what you should do is talk to members of this House who actually have electorates that are covered in forests—that’s right. The member should do well to actually listen to the industry, because this is something that many players have been calling for for quite some time. What he’s saying is completely out of step with the people back home that I talk to that are calling for more domestic processing of our logs. So when he says that we don’t want it, he’s wrong, and the member would do well to actually talk to some people that know something about it, because I’m pretty sure in Hamilton West they haven’t got a big focus on forestry.

In the Waiariki electorate, we are born from the trees. We are people that were absolutely—my grandfather, actually, was one of the workers at the Waipā sawmill. We know forests. We know forests really well. So when people talk about the regulation of log fires and forestry advisers, they see it as a good thing.

This is about something that has been a long time coming. To be able to create Te Uru Rākau, as this Government has done; to be able to put a focus on forestry, like we haven’t, as a country, done for quite some time, is truly significant. To have big, ambitious goals to plant a billion trees is absolutely what this country needs and what we need to be able to address our goals when it comes to climate change, as well.

This bill is going to strengthen the integrity of our forestry supply chain, and that can only be a good thing. When it comes to forestry, of course, we’ve seen that there have been logs flowing offshore for quite some time, and we’ve got to make sure that when we do that, we make sure that we take into account the interests of New Zealanders first. When you come to a place like Rotorua, which is built from the forest, we are reliant on our forestry industry—we’re reliant on the strength of our forestry industry. We haven’t scratched the potential of exactly what our wood, our timber, can do for New Zealand.

So this is one part—this bill is one part in a major plan to be able to strengthen our forestry sector here in New Zealand, and I’ve got nothing but support for it. So I recommend this to the House.

ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Adrian Rurawhe): The question is—

Hon Amy Adams: Mr Speaker—

ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Adrian Rurawhe): —that the motion be agreed to. I’m sorry?

Tim van de Molen: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. The Standing Orders quite clearly state that a member can seek a call until the time you’ve finished putting the question. You were still using those words when she sought the call.

ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Adrian Rurawhe): Yes, and I want to encourage all members to be vigilant when members before them take their seats and I look around the Chamber and no one is seeking the call—I have to start the question. OK. So will someone seek the call?