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Tuesday, 8 November 1977
Page: 3159


Mr Les Johnson (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the Minister for Post and Telecommunications, upon notice, on 20 September 1977:

(1)   Has he directed Australia Post to use $28m of the accumulated 1975-76 and 1976-77 surplus to repay part of the funds provided by the Commonwealth for capital expenditure prior to vesting day.

(2)   When Telecom and Australia Post were created was it intended that they commence operations with a 'clean sheet' irrespective of past deficits.

(3)   How will the Government use the $28m recouped from Australia Post

(4)   Why has the Government sought this sum rather than allow Australia Post to use it in the maintenance of stable prices.


Mr Eric Robinson (MCPHERSON, QUEENSLAND) - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   The Government has decided that the Postal Commission should repay to the Commonwealth $28m in 1977-78 by way of reduction of its capital indebtedness for past borrowings.

(2)   The Government decided in establishing the Postal and Telecommunications Commissions that accumulated postal trading losses and telecommunications profits prior to Vesting Day (1 July 1975) were to be written off and capitalised respectively. The opening balance sheets of the two Commissions reflected this decision.

It was also decided that the accumulated deficiencies in the Commissions' provision for long service leave at 30 June 1975 and the superannuation liability up to 30 June 1975 would be written off.

(3)   The amount concerned will be paid to Consolidated Revenue Fund.

(4)   The Government has decided that the balance of the accumulated surplus should be applied, as necessary, to hold postal rates for standard letters and registered publications. As indicated in (1) above it has also decided that the Commission should use some of its liquid assets not presently required in the business to repay $28m of its capital indebtedness to the Commonwealth for past borrowings. This will mean lower annual interest payments by the Commission to the Commonwealth.

Lockheed Corporation Sales in Australia (Question No. 1533)


Mr Les Johnson (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the Minister representing the Attorney-General, upon notice, on 21 September 1977:

When will the Attorney-General be in a position to provide the information promised by his predecessor on 5 May 1977 regarding the statutory declaration of Mr Geoffrey Nicoll relating to Lockheed Corporation Sales in Australia and the names of the Government Senators who called on the senior Australasian Sales Manager for Lockheed, Mr Peter Mingrove, in Los Angeles, in 1976.


Mr Howard -The Attorney-General has provided the following answer to the honourable member's question:

(1)   A statutory declaration was made by Geoffrey Dimmock Nicoll on 7 May 1976 concerning negotiations for the sale of Lockheed Electra Aircraft in the following terms:

*I, GEOFFREY DIMMOCK NICOLL of Hat 1, 16 Gladstone Parade, Elsternwick, Victoria 3185, do solemnly and sincerely declare:

1.   1 am the Managing Director of Nicoll-Cooke Pty Ltd, Manufacturers' Agents and Aerospace Consultants of Bryson Centre, 186 Exhibition Street, Melbourne in the said State.

2.   THIS company is presently consultant to the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation of Burbank, California in the United States of America.

3.   FROM August 1951 until October 1963 1 was employed by E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd as Manager of the Aviation Division of the company.

4.   DURING the period 1957 to 1959 I was intimately associated with the sale of Lockheed Electra Aircraft to Australian National Airways Pty Ltd, to Trans-Australia Airlines and to Qantas Empire Airways Limited. Three aircraft were sold to Australian National Airways Pty Ltd, three to Trans Australia Airlines and four to Qantas Empire Airways Limited. E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd were not concerned in negotiating the sale of Lockheed Electra Aircraft to Tasman Empire Airways Limited.

5.   THE negotiations with the three Airlines were conducted on a highly competitive basis, and contracts were executed directly between Lockheed Aircraft Corporation and the individual Airlines.

6.   IN accordance with a properly executed sales representation agreement between Lockheed Aircraft Corporation and E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd, the latter company was entitled to commission at an agreed rate on each aircraft sold within the Commonwealth of Australia. Commission was at a normal recognized rate in the trade and was to the best of my recollection of the order 1 Vi per cent to 2 per cent.

7.   THE commission on the sale of all the aircraft was eventually paid direct by the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation to E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd in accordance with the terms and conditions of the Sales Representation Agreement between the two companies.

8.   IN my negotiations no arrangement of any kind was ever mentioned in regard to any part of the commission being paid to any person or company other than E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd or by E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd to any other person or company.

9.   1 firmly and conscientiously believe that no commission in respect of the said sales was paid by E. L. Heymanson & Company Pty Ltd to the then Senator Shane Partridge Minister for Civil Aviation or to any other person or company. '

(2)   Neither I nor my Department has any knowledge of a visit by Government Senators to a Mr Peter Mingrove in Los Angeles in 1976.







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