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Wednesday, 11 December 2002
Page: 7735


Senator HILL (Minister for Defence) (3:04 PM) —I undertook yesterday to seek further information in relation to a question asked by Senator O'Brien relating to the Wheat Board and single desk arrangements. I am advised by the Minister for Trade that Australia's single desk arrangements are fully consistent with WTO rules. Our straight trading enterprises have been corporatised and are very transparent by world standards. Therefore, in the FTA negotiations the government will argue that Australia's single desk arrangements on wheat are transparent, do not distort trade, and that we are therefore committed to defending them in the trade negotiation. That is exactly the position we take in the agricultural negotiations in the WTO.