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Wednesday, 10 October 2012
Page: 7808


Senator XENOPHON (South Australia) (12:38): There are a number of preliminary matters before I get to the amendments that are standing in my name. If I may, I will ask the minister some preliminary questions. I am not sure whether the opposition has a number of questions in relation to how the main bill will operate. One of the issues that I have just raised in my second reading contribution relates to what support small businesses will get under this bill and what support there is under the current antidumping regime in terms of taking on cases. Tindo Solar is to me a typical example of the sorts of difficulties that small manufacturers have. Tindo Solar, with just 10 employees and which is manufacturing in a high-tech manufacturing facility at Mawson Lakes in South Australia, was quoted $1 million for a dumping case. I have spoken to lawyers who deal with WTO matters and they say that it is a highly specialised and very expensive field of law to deal with and that these cases can be exhausting in terms of the exhaustive matters that need to be dealt with. So what mechanisms are there in place? What comfort can the government give to small Australian manufacturers that have difficulty in accessing a fair go if they want to contest a dumping case? Otherwise $1 million is completely out of the question for even some fairly large manufacturers to take on a dumping case.