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Tuesday, 10 August 2004
Page: 25977


Senator HILL (Minister for Defence) (1:02 PM) —I will never satisfy Senator Nettle, but I guess it helps to fill in the day. I draw Senator Nettle's attention to article 7.2.2, which is under the quarantine part of the act. It explicitly says:

Neither Party may have recourse to dispute settlement under this Agreement for any matter arising under this Chapter.

That is the answer to her concern in relation to quarantine matters. She then seemed to move into the area of audiovisual protection. As she knows, Australia were able to successfully negotiate the level of protection that we required under that part. That was very important to us because our cultural identity was something that we were also not prepared to sacrifice for purely economic gain. We were pleased with the outcome that we were able to negotiate, the level of protection we were able to negotiate and the further flexibility that was provided to us in that part. I cannot see any concern in relation to a disputes settlement mechanism, because an outcome of any dispute cannot be to reduce the level of protection that the United States has already agreed to.