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Wednesday, 30 June 1926

Senator GRANT (New South Wales) .- The effect of the alteration made in another place is to impose a duty of 10 per cent, on these articles, if made in Great Britain ; whereas previously they were free; and to increase the intermediate duty by 5 per cent., and the general duty by 10 per cent. Especially in relation to importations from Great Britain, those are substantial increases. I should like to have a definite assurance from the Minister, which he has not so far given, that there is a serious intention to proceed immediately with the manufacture in Australia of the articles enumerated in sub-item 2.

Senator Duncan - A company was formed, and its capital subscribed; but when the duty was reduced under the schedule as it originally came to the Senate, the company declined to proceed. If the modification of the House of Representatives be agreed to, the company will go on.

Senator GRANT - I should like to have the explanation from the Minister, rather than from Senator Duncan.

Senator Duncan - I know the facts, and was responsible for bringing the matter up on the first occasion.

Senator GRANT - The imposition of a duty on these goods is purely a revenue tariff, because they are not manufactured here. The Government professes to follow a policy of protection, and therefore its proposal to imp'ose what is distinctly a revenue duty, should not be countenanced. I should like to have the Minister's assurance that in the near future factories will be established in Australia to manufacture these goods.

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