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Wednesday, 20 April 1966

Mr SPEAKER - Order! I think the honorable member is getting off the course.

Mr POLLARD - On that occasion, the explorers had a boat with them. They sawed it in half, each party taking half the boat and going his respective way. Would it not be infinitely more preferable for the Minister, before negotiating with the Japanese or the people of any other country in relation to the necessity for Australia to have more ships, first to survey Australia's own shipbuilding capacity and her capacity to meet our immediate needs? Then, if we were unable to supply the ore carriers we require, would it not even be better to go to the length of buying a ship in our own right from Japan and owning it for the Australian people?

Mr McEWEN - I thank the honorable member for his very lucid analysis, but I find it a little difficult to answer either " yes " or " no ".

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