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Thursday, 11 June 1970

Mr CHIPP (Hotham) (Minister for Customs and Excise) (12:39 PM) - The honourable member for Wakefield (Mr Kelly) has raised a valid question. As I understand if, he suggests that the Tariff Board, in costing the production of the product, has put particular emphasis on the electrolytic process or the process of adding chlorine, whereas he knows and slates that there are 2 methods of producing caustic soda, the other being by the soda ash process. He has asked me to supply some statistics on the percentage of the product that is produced by the soda ash process. 1 cannot do that because, as the honourable gentleman knows, the evidence was given to the Tariff Board in camera. He would also be aware that the evidence taken at many Tariff Board hearings, if disclosed publicly, could place one particular company at a disadvantage. I have had checked the statistical records of my Department and of the Department of Trade and Industry. For the reason I have staled I cannot disclose the figures held by my Department and the Department of Trade and Industry, but I can say quite definitely to the honourable member that the amount of the product produced by the soda ash process is minima!. That does not entirely satisfy him, but it may slightly relieve his mind.

Schedule agreed to.

Tenth Schedule.

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