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Thursday, 29 May 1997
Page: 4021

Senator HARRADINE(4.17 p.m.) —At present we have a motion before us that deals with the particular issue and also a matter of concern expressed by Senator Murphy. The Minister for Resources and Energy, Senator Parer, has given to this chamber a detailed response to the motion, as it was moved, the reasons for the motion, and a number of matters that were raised in the debate. I know he would be confident in what he said because I am sure that that speech will be used far and wide to ensure that the government holds to what it has said to this chamber. I was impressed by what Senator Parer said to this chamber. It has helped me to clarify my views.

Senator Murphy, in part (a), has noted the continued failure of the government to meet an express election commitment to establish a wood and paper industry council. As I understand it, Senator Parer, on behalf of the government, has indicated that that will be up and running by the middle of July. As you know, Mr Acting Deputy President, I was proposing to move at the end of the motion `and further resolves that if the wood and paper industry council is established within six months of the date of this resolution, the Senate will give favourable consideration to a resolution enabling the regulations to be remade'. I now feel that this amendment will go nowhere until the middle of July. Is that what I heard?

Senator Parer —Yes.

Senator HARRADINE —The middle of July is only a month and a half away. I understand that, on behalf of the opposition, Senator Murphy was going to agree with that particular proposition. I assume, by that agreement, that the opposition would have given favourable consideration to a motion enabling the regulations to be made within that six month period. Obviously, under standing orders, the same regulation cannot be introduced within a period of six months, unless, of course, there is a motion adopted by the majority of the Senate for that to take place. In effect, I see no reason for my further amendment. Under those circumstances, I will be opposing the motion.