Emissions scheme need to maintain industry competitiveness

The Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) said the country’s emissions reduction policy must maintain the competitiveness of the food and grocery export and import industry, without exposing them to costs their competitors don’t face.

Responding to Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s announcement on climate change, AFGC agreed with a national consultative approach to emissions reduction that does not give any country an unfair competitive advantage over Australia.

AFGC chief executive Kate Carnell said a national emission framework is one of the most critical and complex policy development processes in decades and Australia must get it right.

“AFGC strongly supports measures to provide incentives to improve efficiency and reduce carbon emissions. To achieve this, industry supports a consumption-based rather than a production-based approach,” Carnell said.

“The impacts of climate change, including increased costs for energy, transport and raw materials and reduced availability of water mean that a comprehensive sustainability policy is critical.”

She also said with recent increases in food and grocery imports, leading manufacturers are under constant pressure to consider alternative locations overseas, which undermines the future viability of food and grocery manufacturing industry in Australia.

“We would hope that the food and grocery sector will be part of the consultative approach after previously being overlooked in the development of the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS),”



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