Brown gives Treasurer Bass Strait plea
Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown has talked to Treasurer Wayne Swan about a proposal from Tasmanian businesses to equalise freight and passenger subsidies for Bass Strait to link Tasmania to the national highway system.
"I passed on a summary of the proposal to the Treasurer for consideration during a meeting this week in Canberra," Senator Brown said today.
"I have met with several Tasmanian business owners who are concerned that freight subsidisation benefits some imports into Tasmania but not exports. This problem has been exacerbated by the closure of direct shipping from Tasmania to Asia.
"We need a level playing field with other states so Tasmanian businesses can make the most of the Australian market. This doesn't seem to be happening and I'd like to see what the government can propose to rectify the situation.
"The proposal also seeks to equalise the subsidies for passenger travel so that foot passengers can move between Tasmania and other states at a lower, consistent cost," Senator Brown said.