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SELECT COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURAL AND RELATED INDUSTRIES
19/05/2009
Food production in Australia
SELECT COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURAL AND RELATED INDUSTRIES
Senate committee
Tuesday, 19 May 2009
Food production in Australia
Final

CHAIR (Senator Heffernan) —I declare open this public hearing of the Senate Select Committee on Agricultural and Related Industries. The committee is hearing evidence on the committee’s inquiry into food production in Australia and I welcome you all here today. This is a public hearing and a Hansard transcript of proceedings is being made. Before the committee starts taking evidence I remind all witnesses that in giving evidence to the committee they are protected by parliamentary privilege. It is unlawful for anyone to threaten or disadvantage a witness on account of evidence given to a committee, and such action would be treated by the Senate as a contempt. It is also a contempt to give false or misleading evidence.

The committee prefers to hear all evidence given in public, but under the Senate’s resolutions witnesses have the right to request to be heard in private session. It is important that witnesses give the committee notice if they intend to give evidence in camera. If a witness objects to answering a question, the witness should state the ground upon which the objection is taken and the committee will determine whether it will insist on an answer, having regard to the ground which is claimed. If the committee determines to insist on an answer, a witness may request that the answer be given in camera. Such a request may, of course, be made at any other time. The committee has allocated some time at the end of the hearing for people in the audience to make brief statements.

[12.38 pm]