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Wednesday, 25 November 1931

Mr FORDE -On the 20th October the honorable member for Bendigo (Mr. Keane) asked the following questions, upon notice: -

1.   What proportion of the explosives used in mining in Australia is imported?

2.   What is the value of the imports?

3.   Will he make inquiries from the Australian manufacturers as to the reason for the present high cost of explosives?

I am now able to furnish the honorable member with the following information : -

1.   Figures of local production obtained from Nobel (Australasia) Proprietary Limited, and compared with the import figures, indicate that for the twelve months ended 30th June, 1931, the percentage of imported blasting gelatine, gelatine dynamite and gelignite used in mining comprised about18 per cent. of the total consumption.

2.   The value of such explosives imported, namely blasting gelatine, gelatine dynamite and gelignite, for the year 1930-31 was approximately £54,000.

3.   The inquiries which have been made as to the price of mining explosives made in Australia does not indicate that the prices are unduly high. Small increases were made at the beginning of the present year owing to the increased costs of imported materials used in their manufacture.

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