Welcome Remarks by Ambassador Bill Tweddell
Australian Fresh Produce Networking Function – Australian Horticulture Mission to the Philippines 2013
Davao Room Sofitel Philippine Plaza Hotel
19 June 2013 at 5.00 pm
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of the 23 members of the Australian horticulture delegation (including representatives from industry associations and exporters), it is with great pleasure that I welcome you to the Australian Fresh Produce Networking Function. We appreciate your presence and your interest in Australian horticulture.
Many of you will know that on 26 February this year, the Australian Government and the Philippine Government announced revised arrangements to support Philippine consumers’ access to Australian fruits.
Australia is the first country allowed to cold-treat produce while it is in-transit to the Philippines. This will ensure that product arrives in the Philippines in tip-top condition ready for consumers to enjoy.
The new protocol demonstrates the confidence which the Philippines has in the quality of Australia’s export product, and in the integrity of Australia’s world class export certification system.
This protocol provides Philippine consumers with improved access to high quality Australian product. It will also provide a boost for Australian fruit producers and exporters.
I’d like to extend to the Philippine Government through the efforts of the Bureau of Plant Industry - Director Clarito Baron – who is here this evening – a very warm thank you. The cooperation between scientists from Dr Barron’s team and the Australian Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has been first class.
I trust the seminar held earlier this afternoon provided you with a better understanding of Australia’s fresh produce – from table grapes, apples, and cherries to our fantastic citrus fruits – all of which are produced in our pristine environment, guaranteeing a high quality product.
I also trust that your discussions with the Australian delegation have thus far been very productive – dare I say even fruitful!!!
For the visiting Australian horticulture delegation, the next two days provides a good opportunity for you to learn more about the Philippine market, so that your industry and organizations may take advantage of its significant potential.
Thank you and good evening.