Budget Measures Support the Next Generation Forest Products Industry

OTTAWA, March 4 /CNW Telbec/ - The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) today welcomed the spending initiatives and direction announced in the Federal Budget saying it will strengthen the industry's plans for renewal.

"From a forest industry perspective, the Government has its priorities right: investing in green jobs of tomorrow, stimulating the economy through clean energy technologies, and inviting investment by changing the Accelerated Capital Cost Allowance, will give Canada the edge it needs to move into the new bio-economy," says Avrim Lazar, President and CEO of the Forest Products Association of Canada.

"The Next Generation Renewable Power Initiative leverages the industry's ability to make a significant contribution to Canada's vision of becoming a clean energy superpower. This is a win for the environment, economy and the next generation work force." says Lazar.

Last month FPAC announced a new green business model for the forest products industry that will see it harnessing its strong environmental performance and market advantage through the integration of bio-energy and bio-products into traditional forestry operations. And this will require considerable investment in clean technologies and market development.

It is clear that by making capital more available to businesses, by opening up access to funding for R&D and innovation, the Government understands the tremendous potential of the forest products industry to contribute to the economic health of our nation and recognizes that in order for us to prosper we need to stay ahead of the competition who are investing in the greening of their industrial base.

"In addition, the industry greatly welcomes the extension of the Workshare Programme which will put jobs back into the recovery and help idle mills return to production," continued Lazar.

The industry respects the governments need to exercise fiscal restraint, and welcomes the opportunity to work with the government to identify areas where reallocation of funds will have the greatest impact in meeting the Budgets green jobs and clean energy superpower objectives.

Forest Products Association of Canada

The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) provides a voice for Canada's wood, pulp, and paper producers nationally and internationally in government, trade, and environmental affairs. The $65-billion-a-year forest products industry represents almost 2% of Canada's GDP and is one of Canada's largest employers, operating in hundreds of communities and providing hundreds of thousands of direct and indirect jobs across the country.

    FPAC's member companies adhere to five principles of sustainability:
      -  Harvest legally
      -  Regenerate promptly
      -  Reduce waste and promote recycling
      -  Reduce greenhouse gases and pursue carbon neutrality through the
         supply chain
      -  Welcome independent scrutiny of forest management practices

SOURCE Forest Products Association of Canada

For further information: For further information: Monica Bailey, Manager, Corporate and Environmental Communications, Forest Products Association of Canada, (613) 563-1441 x323

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