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Thursday, 9 December 1976

Mr Stewart asked the Minister for Business and Consumer Affairs, upon notice:

Does the Industries Assistance Commission take into account the availability or otherwise of alternative employment for workers in an industry which it recommends should be phased out; if not, why not

Mr Howard -The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

The policy guidelines which the Industries Assistance Commission is required to adopt are set out in Section 22 of the Industries Assistance Commission Act. Among the guidelines set out there, the Commission is required to have regard to the desire of the Government to improve and promote the well-being of the people of Australia with full employment This objective must, of course, be reconciled with a number of other objectives.

Furthermore, in order to ensure that the Government's decisions on assistance are based on the fullest possible information on the social and locational effects, I asked in April this year that the Commission report explicitly on the probable consequences, social and otherwise, of changing existing levels of tariffs or assistance.

The Commission assesses the likely effects of its recommendations upon employment in the particular industry under review and other industries related to it. The Commission relates its recommendations for reduction in assistance to the economy's ability to sustain any structural changes that will result.

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