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Thursday, 28 February 1985
Page: 302

Senator COLLARD(10.35) —I take the opportunity in the Committee stage of the Sugar Agreement Bill to state what I wanted to state when I sought leave earlier. In speaking to clause 1 of the Bill, the reason we voted against the amendment to the amendment was very obvious. Despite the haranguing of the Minister for Finance, Senator Walsh, when he summed up on the second reading of the Bill-incidentally, the Queensland Government showed a certain financial expertise because it was able to continually recycle Commonwealth money and help far more farmers than Senator Walsh would want to-the amendments had nothing to do with that. The amendments had to do with the breaking and keeping of election promises. The election promises of the Prime Minister, Mr Hawke, are known right through the sugar industry in Queensland. He has promised underwriting and other things but has not delivered.

As I said when I spoke to the Australian Democrats amendment, the Queensland Government made very few election promises on the sugar industry; rather it has continually helped that industry through the turmoil and travail it is now facing. For that reason we in the Opposition could not accept the amendment as it was sought to be amended by the Australian Democrats.

The CHAIRMAN —Senator Collard, I have treated your remarks with indulgence, but they are not strictly relevant to clause 1 of the Bill. I ask that the Senate not take up sustained debate on that subject.

Clause agreed to.

Remainder of Bill agreed to.

Bill reported without amendment; report adopted.