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Tuesday, 9 March 1971
Page: 695


Mr DALY (GRAYNDLER, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I address a question to the Minister for Immigration. I refer to the Minister's statement which indicated a reduction of about 10,000 in this year's immigration target. Will the Minister state in what areas of migration the reduction will be effective and whether it will cause the breaking of any arrangements that have been made already with migrants overseas? Is it also a fact that the number of unassisted migrants has fallen? If so, what is the reason for this decline? What is the estimated saving in the cost of the immigration programme this financial year as a result in the reduction of numbers? In view of the reduction this year is it to be taken that the Government proposes drastically to curtail the immigration programme for the year 1971-72?


Mr LYNCH (FLINDERS, VICTORIA) (Minister Assisting the Treasurer) - Against the economic circumstances recently outlined in this House by the Prime Minister, the immigration programme for 1970-71 has been modified to include the arrival of 120,500 assisted migrants and 49,500 unassisted migrants - a total this year of about 170,000 migrants. This will entail a reduction of some 3.000 in the assisted programme and 7,000 in the unassisted programme but will not involve any revocation of existing arrangements with migrants. Regarding the areas involved in the assisted programme, I can indicate to the honourable member that the reduction will be basically effected in the British programme where our operations have been inhibited . markedly by communication difficulties consequential upon the recent British Post Office strike. There will be other smaller and relatively insignificant reductions with those countries with which we have bilateral agreements. Regarding one of the final questions posed by the honourable member I can say that the unassisted programme is an area over which we have little or no control. The downturn has been evident for some months and I believe it to be attributable to the general prosperity of Europe and the associated' economic conditions which that part of the world is enjoying at present.







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