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Wednesday, 17 April 1985
Page: 1184

Senator PETER BAUME(7.04) —I seek clarification, Mr President. The Minister for Education (Senator Ryan) said that the Minister for Finance (Senator Walsh) did not have an obligation to table the papers. Am I not correct in assuming that standing order 363 requires a document relating to public affairs quoted from by a Minister of the Crown, unless stated to be of a confidential nature, or such as should more properly be obtained by address, to be called for and made public? In other words, the Minister is obliged to do so unless it is declared to be confidential. Such a document is required to be made public under standing order 363 if requested. I understand that standing order 364, which relates to other Ministers--

Senator Peter Rae —I mistakenly referred to 364. I meant 363.

Senator PETER BAUME —I want to be clear that, if Senator Ryan's caveat was that under 364 it was not necessary, she would still acknowledge that under 363 there is an obligation on the Minister to table such material if it is called for.

The PRESIDENT —Order! I think that when Senator Peter Rae moved for the tabling of the documents this afternoon I mentioned that the Minister was not present at the time. I did not know at that time whether he claimed confidentiality. That is why Senator Rae indicated that he would raise the matter later on the adjournment.