The Forest Industries Association of Tasmania (FIAT) has welcomed the balanced and inclusive approach by Tasmania’s tourism operators to the pulp mill which has shown that the tourism industry and the forest industry do happily co-exist and actually have more in common than ever before realised – most importantly, a common mission to halt international anti-Tasmania campaigns by green groups which pose the biggest threat to the Tasmanian brand. FIAT Chief Executive Terry Edwards said “The forest industry has always known that the success of Tasmania’s economy is inextricably linked to both tourism and forestry and that the interrelationship between the two industries is symbiotic rather than at odds.” “The tourism operators have identified that the pulp mill will have a positive benefit on Tasmania’s economy but correctly recognise that tourist perceptions and the strength of Tasmania’s brand are vital to the future success of their industry, as it is to ours.” “The biggest threat currently posed to our tourism industry is not the pulp mill itself but the negative perceptions of the project and our State being generated internationally through misinformation campaigns driven by extreme groups such as The Greens and The Wilderness Society.” “This issue is broader than the pulp mill. This issue is about two industries that are each immensely important to Tasmania’s economy and brand coexisting for the long term benefit of Tasmania as a whole.” “Both ITS Global and Tasmania’s leading economist, Bruce Felmingham, have unequivocally expressed that Tasmania can have both.” “It seems that the futures of the tourism industry and forest industry are more intertwined than ever before with joint benefits in strengthening Tasmania’s clean green brand, investing in a rail system throughout the State that can be utilised for both log cartage and tourist transport, and limiting the damage done by extreme environmentalists to our economy by anti-Tasmania propaganda trips overseas.” “Tasmania’s forests are not there exclusively for forestry use, nor are they for the exclusive use of tourists. Our multiple use forests should and are being used by both harmoniously. The Tahune Airwalk in our southern forests is a perfect example of this relationship.” “I am confident that the concerns of tourism operators regarding pulp mill emissions monitoring can be addressed and I am very supportive of their desire to keep Tasmania’s brand intact. This pulp mill should enhance Tasmania’s brand, not damage it.” “The time to act is now, but it is not fair to place responsibility on maintaining the strength of our brand on Gunns and the Government alone, when they are fighting an uphill battle against anti-Tasmania campaigns working against them.” “We have the most extensive system of reserved land than nearly any place on the planet and when coupled with sensitive and environmentally responsible production forestry, value adding and innovation we can ensure the viable co-existence of both industries.” “We need to work together to support our brand and our economy and we need to present a united front to the world that Tasmania is open for business and visitors and that the Tasmanian experience for both tourists and investors will be a positive one.” forest industries logo