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Monday, 22 October 1984
Page: 2105

Senator MacGIBBON —I address my question to the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs. I ask the Minister whether he saw Mr Dolan's announcement in Wellington which was reported last week in an Australian Financial Review article in the following terms:

I think personally it is time that the Anzus Pact was looked at . . . It may mean scrapping, if you use that term, the present pact and arranging something somewhat different in its place.

The article continued:

Asked if he would like to see Australia in a pact with New Zealand and America, Mr Dolan said he did not believe a defence pact was necessary.

Is the Minister aware that Mr Dolan's utterances are accepted both within Australia and overseas as having the imprimatur of the Labor Government upon them? Has the Hawke Government awarded the same status in foreign affairs, that is, de facto ministerial rank, to Mr Dolan as it has awarded him in Treasury where the Government has to get the approval of the Australian Council of Trade Unions before it can present a Budget and, as was shown in the revelation two weeks ago, again in the Australian Financial Review, that Mr Keating has to get the approval of bank unions before granting licences to individual foreign banks ? Finally, has the Government done a deal with Mr Dolan that he will stop calling strikes if the Government lets him and the unions run this country?

Senator GARETH EVANS —Mr Dolan speaks for a great many more Australians than does Senator MacGibbon, and always will. But in this instance he is not to be regarded, assuming that he was reported accurately, as speaking for the Australian Government. The Australian Government's own support for ANZUS has been spelt out on many occasions since March 1983, most comprehensively, of course, in Mr Hayden's statement to Parliament on 15 September 1983 on the review of ANZUS. That statement followed a very comprehensive review undertaken first on a national basis and then in consultation with our Treaty partners. That review concluded, amongst other things, that it is in Australia's interest to maintain the ANZUS Treaty which supports Australia's security in current and prospective strategic circumstances and reflects a coincidence of strategic interest between Australia, New Zealand and the United States of America. Indeed , it is precisely because of the detailed review carried out last year that the Government would see no need to take up Mr Dolan's suggestions, assuming again, of course, that he has been accurately reported.