Thursday, 23 June 2011
Questions without Notice
Live Animal Exports
There were many opportunities to consult through this process. Clearly that was not taken up by the MLA with their representative members. Right throughout this process the engagement through my department and through the embassy with the Indonesian authorities in relation to the suspension has been ongoing. I did have the opportunity of speaking with the Indonesian Minister for Agriculture, Mr Suswono. The meeting went well. It provided both of us with an opportunity to share views about how we can return this industry as quickly as possible. When you look at the comments the minister himself made, as reported, they provide clear encouragement that we can look to the way this trade can return on a sustainable footing whilst maintaining animal welfare outcomes.
It is important also to consider the other state and territory governments, including Queensland, the Northern Territory and WA. They too are part of the industry working group to resolve this issue as quickly as possible. I have called them together and I have continued to inform the ministers for agriculture in WA, the Northern Territory and Queensland about the suspension and the ongoing way we can return the issue.