Reports today have shown the double standards of the Turnbull Liberals when it comes to standing up for Australian jobs in the local paper industry.
In November 2016 the Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Waters Resources, Senator Anne Rushton, wrote to all MPs calling on them to buy Australian made paper:
“I make such choices in my office, and ensure I only use Australian made paper. If you are not doing so already I encourage you to support such purchases.”
Senator Ruston Letter to MPs and Senators
However the latest Senate Estimates questions on notice show that Senator Ruston’s own department buys 66 per cent of its paper from overseas, including 41 per cent from Indonesia, which has now been determined as dumped foreign paper by the Anti-Dumping Commission.
This is a classic case of Liberal duplicity - the Government says one thing yet does another.
Time and time again we are seeing the Liberals’ actions directly endangering the communities and industries which they are spruiking that they support.
If the Assistant Minster stands by the words in her letter she must first get her own department in order, which is a vast consumer of paper.
The Liberals constantly claim that they support paper manufacturing in the Latrobe Valley but once again we find their harmful actions are counter to their fine rhetoric.
If the Liberals were genuine in supporting the social cohesion and stability of regional Australia they should be supporting regional jobs and not making political overtures in an attempt to sandbag the threat from right wing splinter parties.
There is no excuse for the Government not buying Australian when a local manufacturer provides the best value for money, and that is certainly the case with Australian Paper's investment at Maryvale.
Labor calls on the Government to cease buying dumped foreign paper, which is distorting the market and putting more Australian jobs at risk.