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Wednesday, 29 November 2000
Page: 20149


Senator TROETH (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry) (4:33 PM) —As someone who has some acquaintance with agriculture, I am sure Senator O'Brien would be the first to recognise that these types of horticultural bodies in particular, which depend so much on valuable export markets for their returns, need to have a degree of certainty with regard to operations, particularly with the writing of contracts and the keeping of contracts, especially with our overseas trading partners. It was felt necessary to write this legislation in such a way so that there would be a solution to the failure of the designated company to provide these services. You cannot very well say, `We need a solution if something happens, but this is no solution.' With the greatest of respect, a parliamentary inquiry or a review by parliament may be the least professional way of dealing with it. Certainly, the minister should have the capacity to put something immediately in place so that a proper examination could take place through the judicial review and the operations of the company on a day-to-day basis could go on as normal so that industry's viability was not jeopardised in any way. That is the way the government sees it.