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Thursday, 7 November 1946

Mr CALWELL - I shall endeavour to obtain as quickly as possible the figures for which the honorable member has asked. The delay in granting applications for the installation of telephones is due largely to the lack of telephone exchange accommodation. In all capital cities exchange facilities are insufficient to carry the extraordinarily heavy traffic with which the department has had to cope since the outbreak of war. When more exchanges are built, more people can be provided with telephones. However, even in spite of the present shortage of exchange accommodation, improvements will be effected and, as forecast in the speech of the Governor-General, additional facilities will be provided during the next financial year, particularly in outback areas.

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