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PIAA lambasts MP for anti-print comments

Friday, 01 March 2019
By Wayne Robinson

Apology for slating print: Alex Hawke MP

The PIAA has laid into special minister of state Alex Hawke for comments he made apparently decrying print, forcing him into a quick retraction.

Hawke made the comments during a debate with opposition deputy leader Tanya Plibersek over communications in regional areas saying, “Labor is a party that lectures us on climate change action, but are opposing changes that will reduce the amount of printing done by parliamentarians.”

The comments caused an outcry in the PIAA, which was immediately on the phone to Hawke in a series of calls that resulted in the MP retracting his comments. Ironically the biggest donor to Hawke’s local Liberal party in Castle Hill is Rudy Limantono, a print broker.

Andrew Macaulay, CEO of PIAA, said, “PIAA has remonstrated with minister Hawke, and received a profuse apology for the impression that he made. Our industry faces harsh market conditions, and it is critical that misconceptions about print are not spread.

“Hawke’s comments were unfortunate and perpetuate the economically damaging myth that printing is bad for the environment. Which it is not.”

In a quickly published apology Hawke said, ‘In the course of arguing a political point against Labor’s false claims, I made reference to the fact that some MPs in rural Australia would now make use of local radio broadcasts to communicate with their constituents. I also made a political point about Labor’s hypocrisy on climate change. This in no way will affect the printing industry and the excellent service that it provides to Members of Parliament.

The PIAA was quick to remind minister Hawke, and all ministers, that paper is sustainable, renewable, biodegradable and recyclable, and that print is a vital component of integrated marketing with digital, radio and TV channels.

Macaulay said, “Equating climate change and printing is not only reckless, it is also quite damaging to the thousands of printing businesses owned and staffed by Australians, hundreds of thousands of Australians.

“Australian printers are considered to be world leaders in sustainable print, with the industry Sustainable Green Print certification recognised internationally as the metier for environmental stewardship in print.

“Printing businesses are very often the largest private sector employer in regional towns across Australia, minister Hawke’s comments potentially have a negative impact on their businesses and the voters they employ.”

2 Responses to “PIAA lambasts MP for anti-print comments”

  1. March 01, 2019 at 1:16 pm,


    Not sure why they are going so hard on poor Alex, being a LNP member they’ll probably offer him a job post election.

  2. March 01, 2019 at 3:18 pm,

    Inky McFee

    I’m still going to kick his core flutes down.

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