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Tuesday, 16 October 1956

Mr L R JOHNSON (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) son asked the Minister representing the Minister for the Navy, upon notice -

1.   What is the value of naval work performed by Cockatoo Docks and Engineering Company Proprietary Limited in each year since its inception?

2.   Who are the shareholders of the company, and is it controlled by or connected with VickersArmstrong's Proprietary Limited of England?

3.   What are the conditions and what is the period of the lease enjoyed by the company?

4.   What is (a) the value of the premises leased and (b) the rent paid by the company?

5.   What is the capital cost of plant provided by the Naval Board?

6.   Is the company guaranteed naval work to a minimum value each year; if so, to what value?

7.   Does the company operate on a cost-plus basis; if so, at what percentage over cost?

8.   Is the company free to determine its own wage policy with employees, or are such matters determined by the Naval Board?

Mr McMahon - The Minister for the Navy has furnished the following replies: -

1.   Records for the years prior to 1944-45 are not available having been destroyed in accordance with Regulations. For 1945 and subsequent years the figures are -


2.   Shareholders -


The company is controlled by Vickers Limited.

3.   The conditions are generally those ordinarily existing between landlord and tenant with the additional provision that the Commonwealth may take over the premises in an emergency. The present lease is for a period of twenty years and eight months expiring on 31st October, 1974. 4. (a) £2,240,000. (b) Rent is variable and is based on turnover. The average rent since the current lease commenced is £108,940 per annum.

5.   Cost of plant supplied by Commonwealth, £1,195,000.

6.   No.

7.   The company's dealings with the Commonwealth are regulated by a special trading agreement (not to be confused with the lease). Commonwealth work receives priority and is performed at cost. Profits from the operation of the dockyard are payable to the Commonwealth. The company is remunerated by a fee calculated on gross turnover (naval work plus commercial work) plus a proportion of docking fees. The fee varies from 2 per cent. on a turnover under £2,650,000 to 1.5 per cent. on a turnover of £4,000,000 or over. Profits earned by the company on commercial work have up to date been more than sufficient to pay its remuneration.

8.   The trading agreement provides that "the Company shall not, without the consent of the Commonwealth, increase rates of wages except as required by a relevant court award or order or industrial agreement ".

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