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Thursday, 14 October 1971
Page: 2347

Mr BIRRELL (PORT ADELAIDE, SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - My question is also directed to the Minister for Trade and Industry. When did the Tariff Board commence its inquiry into the shipbuilding industry? Has the Board completed its inquiry and, if so, when did the Minister receive its report? In view of the important role that the shipbuilding industry plays in defence and merchant shipping, when can the Parliament expect to receive the report and the Government's decision on that report?

Mr ANTHONY - I cannot give the honourable member the time when the report was started. It has certainly been a-

Mr Charles Jones - It was over 2 years ago.

Mr ANTHONY - I cannot give the date but it certainly has been a considerable time. I received the report on 12th July and it has been under study by Commonwealth departments and, shortly, an interdepartmental committee will be making recommendations to the Government to examine its action as a result of this report. But I am not here to canvass any of the recommendations that the Tariff Board has made, although I have noticed quite a bit of speculation in the Press as to what might be in that report. All I can say about this speculation is that much of it is inaccurate.

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