The Launceston Chamber of Commerce welcomed the announcement by the Prime Minister of $200 million over the next 4 years for the Tasmanian Freight Equalisation Scheme to allow it to include export freight.

Maree Tetlow, Executive Officer at the Launceston Chamber of Commerce, stated that “our members have continually listed freight costs and convenience as a priority in our surveys and we have communicated this to Commonwealth and State politicians.”

 “The business community understand that the cost of freight imports and exports impacts on the cost of doing business whether you directly freight goods or not” she said. “And even more importantly it has been a major reason why some businesses haven’t expanded their operations in Tasmania, or new businesses have decided against establishing operations in Tasmania because moving products on and off the island was just too expensive compared to other business locations elsewhere in Australia.”

 Ms Tetlow went on to say “we are very happy with the announcement today by the Prime Minister, and congratulate everyone that has worked so hard to lobby on our behalf.  This will be a real confidence boost for business in our region.”

 “ Hopefully this funding boost will help to establish more producers and exporters that will build more of a critical mass of freight over time, so we can become more self reliant and prove a commercial case for ongoing regular export shipping services.”