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Friday, 1 May 1987
Page: 2451


Mr HAWKER —by leave-As a member of the Sub-Committee of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Expenditure that produced this report, I am pleased to see that the Minister for Communications (Mr Duffy) has responded reasonably quickly-albeit a very brief response-to the report. It was a quite large report. The Committee made 33 recommendations to the Government and, I dare say, that could explain why it is taking the Minister some time to get to a substantial response. Nonetheless, it is a very important report as it affects people in the country areas of Australia.

These days telephones are considered an essential service and anything the Government and Telecom Australia can do to improve that service would be well received in country areas. Along with all members of the Sub-Committee and this Parliament, I look forward with great interest to the Minister's substantial response to this report. Hopefully he will bring it down before the end of this session, but, if not, certainly early in the next session of Parliament.