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Wednesday, 30 November 1960

Mr MENZIES - I think it was quite well known at the time that these negotiations began that Consolidated Zinc Proprietary Limited would have as a partner a substantial company, because the enormous amount of money involved required most unusual financial provisions. At that time the prospective partner, indeed the actual partner for certain purposes, was British Aluminium Company Limited which, as the honorable member knows, was purchased by Reynolds Metal Company, an American concern. The arrangement between Consolidated Zinc and British Aluminium subsequently was terminated for certain purposes, including Bell Bay. In order to obtain the necessary financial accommodation to enable this great project to go forward, Consolidated Zinc then negotiated with another enterprise, and this was the Kaiser company of the United States. I do not know why the association with Kaiser, a company that has done great work in this country to the great satisfaction of governments, should be regarded as somewhat more dangerous than the association with British Aluminium, which has passed into the hands of Reynolds.

Mr Bryant - It is not any more dangerous.

Mr MENZIES - No. But if the honorable member is putting forward the proposition that an Australian-managed company such as Consolidated Zinc should not participate in the development of these great resources except with Australian capital, then he is, in effect, saying that these resources should not be developed. This is the constant error into which the Opposion falls. It rejects the idea that one of the great hopes for this country is that we continue to attract from overseas fruitful capital investment for the development of Australia's wealth.

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