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Thursday, 18 July 1946

Mr McEWEN (Indi) .-I move -

Thatthe following new sub-clause be added : - " (7.) Thenet return to the Board of all wheat sold in Australia by Government direction at a price less than export parity at the time of sale shall be the export parity price, and the difference (if any) shall be paid by the Government to the Board."

The purpose of the amendment is to give effect to apart of the policy of the Australian Country party, namely, that wheat sold within Australia for purposes other than human consumption should return to the Australian Wheat Board, and,' therefore, ultimately to the growers, the prevailing export parity at the time of its sale. I have advocated this policy on so many occasions that it will not be necessaryfor me to repeat my argument tonight. The effect of the amendment will be to ensure that it will be still competent for the government of the day, as a matter of policy, to make wheat available for live stock feed and industrial purposes in Australia at a reasonable price, but the cost will be borne, not by the wheatgrowers, but by the Government. In short, there should not be made permanent what we regard as a pernicious principle, namely, the compulsory acquisition of a product from the wheat indus try and its resale to another industry at a price less than its realizable value. This amendment, if accepted, will protect the wheat-growers against a continuance of that practice.

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