TASMANIAN farmers slugged by the collapse of former timber giant Gunns Ltd expect to clarify at a mid-March meeting what they will be paid for their plantation timber.
The meeting for Gunns Plantations' creditors is expected to reveal that Macquarie Bank will become the new responsible entity for the company's management schemes.
W.A. Blue Gum Ltd had been involved in negotiations to become a joint responsible entity but has recently pulled out.
Farmers are concerned that the new responsible entity, or investment schemes manager, will only pay for plantation timber at harvest rather than the traditional quarterly payments, said Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association spokesman Nick Steele.
``There are many farmers who really depend on those quarterly payments to survive,'' Mr Steele said.
The mid-March meeting will come after the second Gunns creditors' meeting.
The company called in administrator PPB Advisory last September.
Both unsecured and secured creditors will expect to get a full report on the financial health of the company before the meeting to be announced by PPB Advisory this week, probably for March 4.
Both receivers and managers KordaMentha and potential buyers are looking forward to the detail of the creditors' meeting report before they make decisions that will effect the failed timber company's future.
KordaMentha spokesman Mike Smith said yesterday the Melbourne-based company acting for Gunns' main lending institutions would wait until the creditors' meeting to decide how to handle the potential sale of the Bell Bay pulp mill site.
``There's not much point before the report and the meeting,'' he said.
It is understood that a number of parties representing both domestic and overseas operations have expressed interest in the pulp mill project and site.
KordaMentha will decide whether to call for expressions of interest as part of a tendering process or to accept a reasonable, individual offers.