By John Allan
President’s Message: The Year Ahead
As 2012 comes to a close, I can’t help but observe that the next few years present many opportunities and challenges for the interior forest industry.
First, we still have not seen the WorkSafeBC report on the tragic explosions at the Babine and Lakeland facilities. As a result a certain degree of uncertainty and lack of closure presides over sawmill safety. I would hope we can get some resolution in the first quarter of 2013 so that we can be sure we’ve taken all the steps necessary to ensure that we have the safest work environment possible.
Second, on a happier note, lumber prices are greatly improved from this time last year. Additionally, the market outlook is very positive. In January, 2013 the export tax will be zero and hopefully there will be many more similar months ahead.
Third, regardless of which party wins the May 14, 2013 provincial election, we will have a new government around June 1. I would hope that responding to the implications of the declining interior timber supply will be an early priority for the new Minister.
Last, and certainly not least, on behalf of COFI, please have a happy and safe holiday season and a prosperous 2013.