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Thursday, 24 November 1927

The CHAIRMAN - No point of order is involved. The Chair cannot do otherwise than call on honorable members from each side in turn.

Mr D CAMERON (BRISBANE. QLD) - The honorablemember for Henty (Mr. Gullett) recommended the Government to reduce the amount provided on these Estimates for civil aviation. Until he spoke I had thought that the proposed expenditure was supported by all honorable members. The Leader of the Opposition, while complaining of the expenditure upon defence, said that if there must be such expenditure, he would prefer that it should be on aviation rather than on cruisers and armaments. I am pleased that the Government has proposed an additional grant of £200,000 for the encouragement of civil aviation. It is high time that we brought our aerial enterprises into line with similar undertakings in other countries. The Prime Minister told us that the last Imperial Conference had recognized the value of the civil air services.

Mr Forde - Will not the honorable member give others a chance to say a few words before the guillotine falls?

Mr D CAMERON (BRISBANE. QLD) - I certainly shall. One particular air service which I hope will be developed with the aid of this grant is that from Camooweal to thu rail head of the line from Darwin - a distance of 650 miles, and the link between Charleville and Brisbane - 450 miles - thus reducing the time for mail and passengers between Port Darwin and Brisbane to three days.

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