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Wednesday, 9 June 1926

Senator PAYNE (Tasmania) . - This item has been free, so far as British manufactures are concerned, but it is now proposed- to make the British preferential duty 27½ per cent.

Senator Crawford - Nettlefold's, the largest screw manufacturers in the world, have commenced operations here, and have asked for this duty. They have put up a big factory at Sunshine.

Senator PAYNE - Will the Minister be able, to show that the factory is supplying the whole of the requirements of Australia ?

Senator Crawford - It is not yet doing that. One cannot set a factory in full swing by touching a button.

Senator PAYNE - I have understood from the Minister that where a commodity is not being manufactured commercially the deferred tariff is imposed, and is not put into operation until the Minister is satisfied that the factory is supplying a reasonable proportion of the requirements of the country.

Senator Crawford - The first unit of the factory is in operation. The company intends to double its output in the course of a short time, and then increase it until it is able fully to meet Australian requirements.

Senator PAYNE - If the output of the factory is only 10 per cent, of those requirements the duty cannot fairly be imposed. If the output is 50 per cent, of the requirements of Australia, I am prepared to support the duty, but if it is only an infinitesimal part of our requirements, I regard the duty as an additional burden on those who build homes of their own. Every article used in building upon which a duty is collected increases the cost of building.

Senator Crawford - I am informed that the output of the factory is about 40 per cent, of the requirements of Australia, and that it is steadily increasing.

Senator PAYNE - That being so, I am prepared to give way on the other 10 per cent.

Item agreed to.

Items 186, 189, 200, 202, 206, 208, 223, and. 228 agreed to.

Item 229 (Residual oil and petroleum) -

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