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Wednesday, 25 February 1987
Page: 578


Senator WATSON(11.08) —This amendment will be opposed by the coalition because technically it has the potential to have a wide application and wider implications. Therefore, it is unacceptable. The amendment can be construed technically to give very small interest groups the opportunity to exploit the amendment, particularly paragraph (b). For instance, particular plants may be subject to a common disease running across the species. However, a small interest group could select a particular variety that has been subject to plant variety rights registration and enforce the amendment's penalties and so give rise to a legal situation. It allows for the possibility of exploitation because the disease may not attack the particular variety subject to plant variety rights, whereas it could wipe out a whole species. Therefore, I believe the amendment is far too dangerous and is not practicable in the circumstances, given the wide variety of climatic conditions in Australia.