Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Thursday, 1 August 1946


Mr Bernard Corser r asked the Minister representing the Minister for Trade and Customs, upon notice -

1.   Has his attention been drawn to the statement of a .witness before the Tariff Board that refrigerators, which before the war sold retail from £50 upwards, to-day cost £90 upwards?

2.   If so, in view of the fact that in States such as Queensland, refrigerators are essential for health reasons, especially where there are young children in the family, will he ascertain the reason for this increase in price?

3.   Will the Government consider taking such action as will enable householders to purchase refrigerators at pre-war prices?


Mr Forde - The Minister for Trade and Customs has supplied the following answers : -

1.   Yes.

2.   As indicated in the Tariff Board's report, production costs are much higher than before i.he war. including the cost of imported parts. The landed cost of imported refrigerators would also be much higher.

3.   The retail prices of refrigerators are fixed' by the Prices Commissioner. As' the honorable member is aware, the general principle followed in fixing the price of goods to the consumer is to maintain pre-war levels so far as is possible having regard to increases in production costs which have inevitably occurred over the last six years. This principle will be maintained in fixing retail pricesof refrigerators.


Mr TURNBULL (WIMMERA, VICTORIA) l asked the Minister representing the Minister for Trade and Customs, Upon notice - . ,

1.   Did the Tariff Board make a finding on the 15th May, 1940, that grave misgivings were justified as to whether the manufacture of domestic refrigerators in Australia was developing on sound economic lines?

2.   If so, what remedial action, if any, is proposed ?


Mr Forde - The Minister for Trade and Customs has supplied the following answers : - 1.Yes.

2.   The Tariff Board's finding in this respect was mainly based on evidence indicating that the Australian market is probably too small to absorb economically the output of the number of firms now engaged in the manufacture of domestic refrigerators. The board's report was tabled in the Parliament even before it was printed, so that it would be available as early as possible for the information of Australian manufacturers. Whether they will continue with their planned programmes is a matter for the manufacturers themselves to decide.







Suggest corrections