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Friday, 28 November 1986
Page: 3034


Senator BUTTON (Minister for Industry, Technology and Commerce)(3.55) —I thank Senator Watson for his contribution to the debate on textiles, clothing and footwear, which is an endless saga. I hope that we can have the debate again-this is said in all fairness-when Opposition senators have the opportunity to be better informed about the details of the Government's proposals. I do not blame Senator Watson for that. I am just saying that those details will be provided in due course and we will then be able to have a more serious debate on the issue. However, I do not think there is any point in recycling anxieties. These industries have to be restructured. They have to be made more internationally competitive. It is not true to say that industries that require an enormous level of protection and subsidy of one kind and another are economically efficient industries. That is an element which is important in the Government's planning. I look forward to providing further details about the plan in due course and then it can be debated at greater length,

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Senate adjourned at 3.56 p.m.